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Bristol researcher wins prestigious diabetes research award

26 July 2017

A Bristol researcher whose own family has been affected by diabetes has just been awarded £587,237 from Diabetes UK to find out why people with Type 2 diabetes are more likely to develop some cancers.

Dr Emma Vincent who works at the University of Bristol has been awarded Diabetes UK’s R D Lawrence Fellowship, set up in recognition of the life and work of the late Dr R D Lawrence, co-founder of Diabetes UK.

Dr Vincent worked in diabetes research as part of her PhD, but it was only when a close family member had to have part of a foot amputated as a result of the condition that she realised the full importance of diabetes research.

The focus for her Diabetes UK-funded work will be to investigate changes which happen inside the body when someone has Type 2 diabetes that may encourage certain cancers, such as pancreatic, liver and endometrial cancers, to develop. Dr Vincent hopes that by understanding these processes, we will be able to find ways to protect people with Type 2 from developing these cancers in the future.

Dr Emma Vincent said:

“I am extremely honoured to receive the RD Lawrence Fellowship from Diabetes UK. Diabetes affects so many - people living with the condition and those who are close to them. We need to find new ways to prevent and treat not only the condition itself but the health complications arising from it. Progress on these fronts has the potential to improve many people’s lives.”

When not at work in the University of Bristol’s School of Clinical Sciences, Dr Vincent enjoys cycling and running. She is planning to run the Lisbon Marathon in October in aid of Diabetes UK.

Dr Elizabeth Robertson, Director of Research at Diabetes UK, said:

“This Fellowship highlights our commitment to investing in the future leaders of diabetes research. Dr Vincent’s research is key to understanding what changes happen in the body when Type 2 develops, that may encourage certain types of cancers to grow. Knowing those changes, we can find ways to prevent cancers in people with Type 2 diabetes.

“By funding critical research like this, we’re improving lives of people with diabetes and aiming for a world where diabetes can do no harm.”

Diabetes UK is the leading charitable funder of diabetes research in the UK, investing around £7 million every year. The Diabetes UK RD Lawrence Fellowship allows outstanding early career researchers to establish themselves as independent diabetes researchers.

For more information about diabetes research, visit To sponsor Dr Emma Vincent in the Lisbon Marathon, go to

Bristol researcher wins prestigious diabetes research award
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