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Professor Michael Wakelam to be new Director of Babraham Institute

1 June 2006

The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and the Governing Body of the Babraham Institute are pleased to announce that Michael Wakelam has been appointed Director of the Institute with effect from 1 January 2007.

Professor Wakelam trained initially in medical biochemistry and biochemistry at the University of Birmingham. He has over twenty years research experience in the area of cell signalling; focusing particularly in recent years on the regulation of signalling pathways in normal and cancer cells and in inflammatory responses, and on interactions between different molecules in the pathways.

"I am delighted to be coming to the Babraham Institute, which is renowned around the world for the quality of its research into fundamental molecular and cellular processes. I look forward to the stimulation of leading such a successful and focused centre, both in terms of the science and the increasingly successful interactions with biotech businesses at the Babraham campus," said Professor Wakelam.

Professor Wakelam brings a wealth of experience of research at the biological/medical interface, through his current position as Professor of Molecular Pharmacology at the Cancer Research UK Institute for Cancer Studies at the University of Birmingham, and previous research and teaching posts at the University of Glasgow, Imperial College London and the University of Konstanz, Germany. He is currently Chair of the Molecular and Cellular Medicine Board and a member of the Council of the Medical Research Council, and of the Expert Group for Translation awards of the Wellcome Trust.

"The Babraham Institute scored extremely highly in BBSRC's recent institute assessment exercise, and I very pleased that we have been able to recruit in Michael Wakelam someone who will build upon and continue this record of excellence," said BBSRC Chief Executive Professor Julia Goodfellow.


Notes to editors

The Babraham Institute is sponsored by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). It is an educational charity devoted to biomedical research and training aimed at understanding biological events that lie behind normal and abnormal functions of cells. The Institute's research uses the latest technologies in the study of conditions such as cancer, Alzheimer's, foetal abnormality and rheumatoid arthritis.  

In September 2005, BBSRC announced that Professor Philip Ingham would be taking up the post of Director of Babraham Institute in September 2006. Professor Ingham subsequently withdrew from taking up this appointment for personal family reasons. The Institute is currently led by Acting Director, Dr John Bicknell.


The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) is the UK funding agency for research in the life sciences. Sponsored by Government, BBSRC annually invests around £380 million in a wide range of research that makes a significant contribution to the quality of life for UK citizens and supports a number of important industrial stakeholders including the agriculture, food, chemical, healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors.


Professor Michael Wakelam, Director Babraham Institute. (766 KB)

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External contact

Claire Cockcroft, Babraham Institute

tel: 01223 496260


Matt Goode, Head of External Relations

tel: 01793 413299

Tracey Jewitt, Media Officer

tel: 01793 414694
fax: 01793 413382