20 April 2012

Sanger Institute scientist elected Fellow of the Royal Society

Professor Gordon Dougan joins the Fellowship of the Royal Society

Professor Gordon Dougan joins the Fellowship of the Royal Society

Professor Gordon Dougan joins the Fellowship of the Royal Society

Professor Gordon Dougan, head of Pathogens at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, has been elected to Fellowship of the Royal Society, the UK's leading scientific organisation. Today's announcement (Friday 20 April) recognises Professor Dougan's significant contribution to the genetics of infectious disease.

Professor Dougan joins an existing membership of 1350 of the most distinguished scientists from the United Kingdom, other Commonwealth countries and the Republic of Ireland.

"I'm extremely grateful to be elected to the Royal Society along with so many esteemed scientists," says Professor Dougan, who is also an Honorary Professor at the University of Cambridge, Honorary Professor at the London school of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and a Fellow of Wolfson College. "This honour would not have been possible without the tremendous efforts of all those who have worked with me over the years and I thank them."

Professor Dougan plays a pivotal role in guiding the direction of pathogen research at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, representing Pathogens on the Board of Management and heading up the Microbial Pathogenesis team. He is dedicated to exploring the interaction between pathogens and their hosts to benefit human health, in particular using Salmonella enteric serovar Typhi, the cause of typhoid, as a focus.

" Beyond his scientific achievements, both at the Sanger Institute and elsewhere Gordon Dougan has always been a tremendous source of inspiration for other scientists. "

Professor Mike Stratton

His team have been involved in a number of major high-profile worldwide collaborations to investigate methods for developing vaccines against diseases including typhoid, whooping cough, malaria, and tuberculosis; all critically important diseases, particularly in the third world. Committed to collaborative working and open-access research, Professor Dougan is particularly interested in the career development of younger scientists and the transfer of expertise to those working in developing countries.

"Professor Dougan's election to the Royal Society is hugely merited and I am absolutely delighted he has received this honour," says Professor Mike Stratton, Director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute. "Throughout his career, Gordon has been relentlessly committed to understanding and reducing the burden some of the world's most prevalent infectious diseases, particularly in the developing world.

"Beyond his scientific achievements, both at the Sanger Institute and elsewhere Gordon has always been a tremendous source of inspiration for other scientists, an energetic spirit of pathogen research with boundless enthusiasm who provides continuous leadership, encouragement and support to other scientists, young and not so young. I personally owe him a great debt for his wise advice and support."

Today's election adds to Professor Dougan's honours awarded from institutions on both sides of the Atlantic. He was elected to membership of EMBO in 2011, to the Fellowship of the American Society for Microbiology in 2010, to the Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2002 and to the Fellowship of the Biological Society in 2010.

"This is a fitting recognition of the outstanding contribution Professor Dougan and his team have made to our understanding the genetics behind infectious diseases," says Professor Stanley Falkow, Stanford University School of Medicine and Lasker Prize winner. "His work, identifying the genes that are involved in host-pathogen relationships and their mechanisms, has already stimulated the development of important vaccines. In the future I expect his research will continue to help improve the clinical diagnosis and treatment of major infectious diseases."

Notes to Editors

The Royal Society

The Royal Society is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world's most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering, and medicine. The Society's fundamental purpose, as it has been since its foundation in 1660, is to recognise, promote, and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity.

The Society's strategic priorities emphasise its commitment to the highest quality science, to curiosity-driven research, and to the development and use of science for the benefit of society. These priorities are:

  • Promoting science and its benefits
  • Recognising excellence in science
  • Supporting outstanding science
  • Providing scientific advice for policy
  • Fostering international and global cooperation
  • Education and public engagement

The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute is one of the world's leading genome centres. Through its ability to conduct research at scale, it is able to engage in bold and long-term exploratory projects that are designed to influence and empower medical science globally. Institute research findings, generated through its own research programmes and through its leading role in international consortia, are being used to develop new diagnostics and treatments for human disease.

Website

The Wellcome Trust

The Wellcome Trust is a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. We support the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. Our breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. We are independent of both political and commercial interests.

Website

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