Prof Sarah Cleaveland elected to join Academy of Medical Sciences

Published: 8 May 2019

Professor Sarah Cleaveland has been elected to join the prestigious Academy of Medical Sciences Fellowship

Professor Sarah Cleaveland has been elected to join the prestigious Academy of Medical Sciences Fellowship. 

Professor Sarah Cleaveland

The Professor of Comparative Epidemiology at the College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences is one of 50 of the UK’s leading figures within biomedical and health sciences who have been asked to join the esteemed Fellowship.

Prof Cleaveland, from the Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health & Comparative Medicine, was selected for research which has shaped current international strategies for global elimination of rabies.

New Fellows are chosen for their outstanding contributions to advancing medical science, cutting edge research discoveries, and translating developments into benefits for patients and wider society.

Prof Cleaveland said: ““I'm honoured to have been elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences. It’s a great privilege to be joining a group of such accomplished and respected individuals. 

“This honour reflects the contributions of many colleagues from the University of Glasgow and partners around the world, with whom I have been working to progress the global elimination of rabies and in applying One Health approaches to combat other human and animal disease problems.”

Professor Cleaveland is also a Fellow of the Royal Society for her work on infectious diseases. She started her career working on rabies, a terrifying and deadly disease that still kills tens of thousands of people in Africa and Asia every year. The research programme she established in Tanzania has provided important evidence to change the way that rabies is being tackled around the world, and is underpinning international efforts towards the global elimination of rabies, which is now a declared objective of the World Health Organization, the World Animal Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization.

Prof Cleaveland has worked extensively amongst the pastoral Masai people in Northern Tanzania and particularly on a number of infectious diseases that infect people, domestic animals and wildlife. Her work continues to attract large numbers of graduate students to work with her from many parts of the world, and the outcomes of her studies provide important information for policies in infectious disease control.

Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences said: “The Academy’s Fellowship is a unique assembly of the finest minds in biomedical and health research, from across the UK and beyond. Our Fellows are at the centre of all that we do, from supporting early career researchers via our hugely popular mentorship programme to incorporating public and patient views into health research. Their collective wisdom is a national asset to guide research and policy aimed at tackling pressing health challenges.

“It brings me great pleasure to congratulate the new Fellows, each of whom has pushed the boundaries of their individual research field. I am always delighted to see the Fellowship expand, adding fresh talent to our invaluable pool of high-quality guidance, advice and expertise.”

Professor Philippa Saunders FRSE FMedSci, Registrar of the Academy of Medical Sciences, said: “The Academy continues to ensure that the diversity of medical science is represented in the Fellowship. This year we are particularly pleased to celebrate the highest percentage of women the Academy has ever elected in one year, taking us a step closer to our goal of gender parity.”

19 of the new Fellows are women, representing 38% of all Fellows elected in 2019, the highest percentage of women ever elected in one year. 20% of the new Fellows are non-UK nationals, coming from seven countries and four continents.

The new Fellows will be formally admitted to the Academy at a ceremony on 26 June 2019.


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First published: 8 May 2019

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