March 31, 2015, by Editor

Pharmacy School Research Blog

Here is the latest Pharmacy School Research Blog, created by Jonas Emsley:

Dear All,

Welcome to the pharmacy school research blog which covers updates from our research activity including all the developments on big advances in research and publications, press releases in the pharmaceutical sciences


1. Outstanding result for research outputs in REF2014

Boots Science Building

Boots Science Building

The School of Pharmacy is delighted to have once again performed so well in the UK Government’s assessment of the quality of research at all UK Universities. There were 94 entries from Schools of Pharmacy, Nursing, Dentistry and Allied Health Professions to the 2014 Research Excellence Framework. The School of Pharmacy has come joint 4th on quality of research and is the top UK Pharmacy School to be entered just as Pharmacy. 51% of our research was ranked 4* (world leading) and a further 41% as 3* (internationally excellent). Of particular significance is that we are the only School of Pharmacy to have 100% of research at 4* in the ‘Impact on Society’ category, showing that we are the most effective School in using our research to improve people’s lives through new medicines and innovation in the practice of Pharmacy as a profession.

2. Five new grant success stories

This has been a great quarter in terms of new grants. Dr Cornelia de Moor was awarded a total grant of £260,000 from Arthritis Research UK “Cordycepin as a lead compound for the treatment of osteoarthritis pain”. The project is a collaboration with Victoria Chapman (Life Sciences), Pavel Gershkovich and Dave Barrett.

Grant success stories

Grant success stories

Professor Jonas Emsley was awarded a grant of £688,179 from the Medical Research Council (£313,259 to UoN) for a project entitled “ADAMTS13 structure and the molecular basis of VWF recognition and cleavage”. The project has the long term goal of developing a new therapy for the treatment of stroke and is a collaboration with Imperial College London.Professor Kevin Shakesheff has been awarded two new grants: £200,000 from the Engineering Physical Sciences Research Council for a project entitled “Landscape Fellowship for Derfogail Delcassian: pancreatic particles: controlling the immune response”. The project is a collaboration with Imperial College London and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. £108,688 from the EU for an ERC Proof of Concept grant: INTRASTEM. Dr Franco Falcone was awarded £60,000 from CAPES (Brazil) for a project entitled “Development of schistosoma mansoni protein kinases as new drug targets”. The project is a collaboration with Professor Jonas Emsley, Dr Lodewijk Dekker and the Centro de Excelencia em Bioinformatica (Belo Horizonte).

3. Pharmacy school research update.

Malaysia campus

Malaysia campus

Malaysia campus

Researchers in the United Kingdom and Malaysia are developing a new class of injectable material that stimulates stem cells to regenerate damaged tissue and form new blood vessels, heart and bone tissue. Their aim is to produce radical new treatments that will reduce the need for invasive surgery, optimise recovery and reduce the risk of undesirable scar tissue. The research, which brings together expertise at the University of Nottingham and its Malaysia Campus (UNMC), is part of the “Rational Bioactive Materials Design for Tissue Generation” or “Biodesign” project – an €11m EU-funded initiative involving 21 research teams from across Europ. Within the last quarter research at the malaysia campus has produced 8 publications covering topics from drug delivery, cancer research and anti-infectives (see link below).

Publication success

Bees wax forumulation in drug delivery:

Bees wax formulation in drug delivery

Bees wax formulation in drug delivery

In a collaboration between the pharmacy school at the Nottingham (David Scurr, Clive Roberts) and Malaysia campuses (Chloe See Wei Tan, Nashiru Billa), a publication in Nanomaterials (2014), 4, 905-916 used a composite of bee’s wax and theobroma oil to formulate an AmB-containing solid lipid nanoparticlate delivery system. Invasive fungal infections have been recognized as a major cause of morbidity and mortality among immuno-deficient patients (e.g., (AIDS) worldwide and the polyene macrolide, amphotericin B (AmB), has been in use for over 30 years remains as the drug of choice for managing these conditions. this study improves the bioavailability of AmB.

Cancer research and drug discovery.

Mitotic kinases have attracted significant attention as important targets for developing treatments for cancer. In a study published in Molecular Pharmacology involving Tracey Bradshaw’s group from the University of Nottingham in a collaboration with School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia (Shudong Wang). Novel chemical TL-77 represents a promising anticancer agent worthy of further evaluation.

Research into cardiovascular disease.

Research into cardiovascular disease

Research into cardiovascular disease

A combined biophysical and genetic approach in identifying potential therapeutic avenues for treating bleeding and thrombotic disorders was published in the journal Blood. 2014;124(25):3799-807. This involved a a collaboration betweenthe Tom Diacovo group (Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY) and group of Jonas Emsley at the University of Nottingham.These findings broaden our understanding of mechanisms governing platelet-VWF interactions in health and disease, and underscore the importance of combined biophysical and genetic approaches in identifying potential therapeutic avenues for treating bleeding and thrombotic disorders.

Want to read more?

This link gives you access to the latest edition of the School of Pharmacy Journal, a collection of publications and press releases from May to July collated by Gail Atkinson.

yours jonas


Prof Jonas Emsley                                                       Dr Nashiru Billa                   

Chair of School Research Committee                     Chair of School Research Committee

(Nottingham)                                                               (Malaysia)



Tel: +44 1158467092


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