Diabetes professor awarded CBE
A doctor who established an international centre of excellence in diabetes research in Leicester has been awarded a CBE in the New Year’s Honours List.
Professor Melanie Davies has been responsible for major advances in diabetes and receives the award for services to diabetes research.
Professor Davies was appointed in 1996 as a full-time NHS Consultant at Leicester Royal Infirmary and recruited her first research nurse in 1998. With increasing success the team grew and Professor Davies took up an appointment with the University of Leicester as Professor of Diabetes Medicine in 2007.
This award means a lot because it is recognition for a significant amount of hard work and determination in turning a vision into reality and I would like to acknowledge the great team with which I am fortunate to work
Sustained growth over several years saw relocation to the Leicester General Hospital site, bringing together a number of colleagues into one large and increasingly successful unit.
The Leicester Diabetes Centre
Working alongside Professor Kamlesh Khunti, Professor Davies has built up the Leicester Diabetes Centre team with more than 140 people currently carrying out over 40 studies designed to improve the lives of people with diabetes. The Leicester Diabetes Centre is recognised across the world for its leading research, education and innovation.
Professor Davies is still a practising hospital Consultant at Leicester General Hospital and last summer was listed among the top ten global diabetes experts. Having published over 400 academic articles and been recognised by the National Institute of Health Research as one of England’s most successful researchers, she has risen to the top in what is still a male-dominated industry.
Professor Davies said: “This award means a lot because it is recognition for a significant amount of hard work and determination in turning a vision into reality and I would like to acknowledge the great team with which I am fortunate to work.”
Professor Melanie Davies gave up a promising career in the equestrian world as a show jumper in order to study medicine at the University of Sheffield, she became the first member of her family to get a degree. Professor Davies continued her training in Ipswich and Cambridge before being appointed as a Consultant in Leicester in 1996 and subsequently, a Professor of Diabetes Medicine at the University of Leicester in 2007.
An interest in research
Professor Davies said she has always had an interest in research, though earlier in her career had to fit this in around being a full-time consultant and looking after her family.
She said: “Research is about looking at gaps in clinical knowledge and solving these problems by applying new methods, then testing and measuring what really makes a difference, rather than continuing to do things the same way.”
Professor Davies lives in Scraptoft, Leicester, with her husband Andrew and their three children, Jacob, 21, Isaac, 19, and Tilly, 16.
The Leicester Diabetes Centre is a partnership between the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and the University of Leicester, which was officially opened in 2013 by Sir Steve Redgrave CBE.