Profile – Dr Emma Mead

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Dr Emma Mead

Job title:

Senior Neurobiologist and Team Leader

Place of work / study:

Alzheimer’s Research UK Oxford Drug Discovery Institute   

Area of Research:


How is your work funded:

Fully funded by Alzheimer’s Research UK

Tell us a little about yourself:

I received my PhD in Neuroscience from University College London, with a focus on neuroinflammation and the role of microglia in Alzheimer’s disease. After gaining a real interest in inflammation and immunology, I undertook post-doctoral research position at Cardiff University, where I studied the mechanism of action of naturally occurring anti-inflammatory compounds in a variety of inflammatory diseases. I had developed a real interest in translational research during my degree and post-doc, so I decided to move into industry, and subsequently joined Eli Lilly as a senior scientist and team co-ordinator after my post-doc. There, I worked in target validation and early drug discovery for neurodegeneration, and established an in vitro neuroinflammation assay platform. I now lead the neuroinflammation team at the ODDI. We utilise human iPSC macrophage and primary microglial cultures for target validation, and develop cell based screening assays for progression of neuroinflammatory projects.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself:

I have an allotment and love being creative in the kitchen with the produce – this often benefits the team when cakes are involved!

Why did you choose to work in dementia?

I have always been fascinated by the brain, and what makes us unique individuals. During dementia, people lose a huge part of themselves in the form of the memories and experiences that have shaped their lives, which takes them away from their loved ones. Having seen the effect of dementia on individuals as well as their families through volunteering at Dementia Cafes, I am passionate about trying to understand how to slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases, to help both people living with these conditions and their family and friends.

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