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BHF names Oxford researcher ‘Fellow of the Year’

Dr Nicola Smart has been named the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) first Fellow of the Year, in recognition of her heart research throughout 2011. Dr Smart has been working under BHF Professor Paul Riley1 on the potential for repairing heart tissue damaged by myocardial infarction (MI).

Dr Smart was lead author on a paper published in 2011, demonstrating the heart’s potential to repair itself after damage.2 Having worked with Professor Riley for over a decade at University College London (UCL), the team have now moved to the University of Oxford where they will link up with the BHF’s Centre of Research Excellence.

The BHF launched this award to recognise extraordinary achievements by one of their research fellows. The winner receives a trophy and a grant to further support their work.

Professor Peter Weissberg, BHF Medical Director, said: “The BHF is fighting heart disease through funding high quality research and this is most effectively achieved by supporting the best and brightest people. Nicola Smart is an outstanding role model and we hope this award will inspire other young scientists to follow her lead”.

BHF Medical Director Peter Weissberg presents the award to Dr Smart

BHF Medical Director Peter Weissberg presents the award to Dr Smart

Upon receiving the award Dr Nicola Smart said: “I’m honoured to receive this award. The BHF’s support for me and my work over the years has been vital in helping make the progress we have done so far. This award gives me even greater motivation to work towards my ultimate goal of developing a treatment for people who have had heart attacks or suffer from heart failure”.

For more information about the BHF’s research visit


1 For more information about Professor Riley visit:

2 Smart N, Bollini S, Dubé KN, et al. De novo cardiomyocytes from within the activated adult heart after injury. Nature 2011;474:640–4. doi:10.1038/nature10188

Published on: April 18, 2012

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  • ArrhythmiaAlliance
  • Stars
  • Anticoagulation Europe
  • Atrial Fibrillation Association

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