Young Researcher Prize
Open to keen young scientists (up to 35 years at the time of application) with a desire to fund the next stage of a career focussed on an animal-test free future.
Because toxicology has for so long been centred on animal testing, many scientists with concerns about the use of animals are deterred from becoming toxicologists. Those who do enter the field can find that access to funding for working on non-animal tests can be a barrier.
We want to change this, and to encourage young scientists to develop a career in toxicology without harming animals by offering bursaries to allow them to advance in this area. Nineteen young scientists from nine countries have so far shared £210,000 prize money to ensure they can continue to use only humane and scientifically-relevant research in their future careers.
For 2016 we are delighted to announce that we are increasing the prize fund from £50,000 to £150,000, providing £10,000 each for up to 15 Young Researchers:
- 5 Young Researchers Asia awards
- 5 Young Researchers Americas awards
- 5 awards will be presented to young scientists in any other part of the world
By increasing our outreach specifically in areas such as South and Central America, and across Asia, we hope to raise knowledge and support for animal-free science as well as provide encouragement to those researchers using non-animal methods.
Background research papers for each prize category aim to increase awareness of the Lush Prize and ensure nominations.
The environment for discussion of alternatives to animal use is expanding, therefore it is vital to be persistent and remain true to one’s values in pursuing career and networking opportunities. A very proactive attitude is needed- ethical scientists must seek out their chances, but the rewards can be hugely successful.
Download the 2015 Background Paper for Young Researchers Prize.
Entering and Nominating
Nominations for the 2016 Prize are now closed.
Laura Bray (£10,000)
Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research, Germany
A proposed project to provide three key developments to animal replacement in cancer research and patients: a toolbox for medical researchers to study acute myeloid leukemia in vitro; a method for high throughput drug screening to accelerate clinical trials; a model system to test patient blood samples, for the purpose of individualising their treatment program.
Jeremy Caplin (£10,000)
Hashemi Labs, Iowa State University, USA
For work on an alternative to animal testing through the design and use of a “placenta-on-a-chip”. This chip is a 3D microfluidic device that serves as an improved method for drug testing and toxicology.
Elena Kummer (£10,000)
Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy
For work contributing to understanding the extent and quality of allergic sensitization. The goal is to provide a simple assay based on the use of a commercially available cell lines able to provide potency information, which is required for full replacement of animals in the assessment of the allergenic potential of xenobiotic.
Bianca Marigliani (£10,000)
The Federal University of São Paulo, Brazil
For research to replace the use of fetal bovine serum (FBS), obtained from bovine fetuses during slaughter of pregnant cows. FBS is the most common animal-derivative used as a medium supplement but has both ethical and technical problems.
Ilka Maschmeyer (£10,000)
Working on the long-term systemic interconnection of different organs with each other, focusing on the skin tissue, providing the dermal application route for cosmetics and drugs, replacing animal tests.
Dr Lena Smirnova (£10,000)
Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing, USA
For research on 3D organotypical human in vitro brain model development in combination with multi-omics technologies for (developmental) neurotoxicity testing (DNT). The research goal is to establish a high-throughput testing platform for in vitro chemical testing.
Fluminense Federal University, Brazil
Róber is developing research on 3D cell culture models, models for neuro-toxicology and neuro-pharmacology and alternatives for uses in the scientific education. He was the first student to get a legal recourse of conscious objection in Brazil, and participates in the 1R Net (www.1rnet.org), providing information to students and professors in Brazil and other Latin-American countries.
Thit Aarøe Mørck.
University of Copenhagen, Denmark
Thit is part of the research group of Professor, PhD Lisbeth E. Knudsen at the Department of Public Health, faculty of Health and Medical Science at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. The main focus of the research is human exposure to environmental chemicals, with special emphasis on the sensitive periods of pregnancy and childhood.
Dr Henrik Johansson.
Lund University, Lund, Sweden
The project for which Dr. Johansson was awarded the Lush Prize Young Researcher Award describes the development and use of the novel test method GARD – Genomic Allergen Rapid Detection, an assay for assessment of chemical sensitizers. GARD utilises an in vitro model of so-called dendritic cells, a central player in the human immune system.
University of Konstanz, Germany
Anne’s project measures human neurons, which are treated with different kinds of substances, to assess whether these have a negative impact on neurite growth. Her project combines a high-throughput screening assay with advanced research technologies.
Division of Toxicology/RIKILT Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen University and Research Centre, Netherlands
Besides being the Dutch National Reference Laboratory for monitoring residues and contaminants in food and feed, RIKILT is a European Reference Laboratory for specific analytical domains. In addition to method development and validation of tests, RIKILT also advises and participates in panels from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and CODEX.
Simona Martinotti, Italy (£12,500)
For her research with Dr. Ranzato into wound healing using drug strategies based on natural products and traditional medicines.
Alice Limonciel, Austria (£12,500)
For her research into the improvement of in-vitro models for testing toxicity effects on human kidneys.
Lydia Aschauer, Austria (£12,500)
For her research on improving predictions of human responses to chemicals through understanding molecular mechanisms.
Katja Reinhard, Germany (£12,500)
For her research into visual impairment and blindness using human retinal tissue in vitro.
Elizabeth Woehrling, UK (£12,500)
For her work on the development of a new in vitro test for neurotoxicity
Felix Rivera-Mariani, USA (£12,500)
For his work on expanding an existing non animal test into new areas.
Chiara Scanarotti, Italy (£12,500)
For her work on skin sensitisation and chemical mixtures.
Line Mathiesen, Denmark (£12,500)
For her work on studying the impact of toxics on placental tissue.