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Dr Fiona Watt wins prestigious Michael Mason Prize 2016.

Dr Fiona Watt, theme lead at the OA Centre is the winner of the prestigious Michael Mason Prize 2016 awarded by the British Society for Rheumatology, for her contributions to the field.

The award represents the increasing interest in osteoarthritis research in recent years and desire to find new ways to treat the disease: osteoarthritis remains the leading cause of joint pain and disability in the UK, and major reason for joint replacement.
- Dr Fiona Watt

Fiona is a Senior Clinical Research Fellow at the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology, NDORMS, as well as an honorary consultant rheumatologist at the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre. Her research work focuses on human clinical studies and trials relevant to osteoarthritis within the Arthritis Research UK Centre for Osteoarthritis Pathogenesis, where she also leads the Clinical Translation theme.

Her research interest is in the early diagnosis, stratification and treatment of osteoarthritis and she is involved with a number of groups and steering committees which focus on the treatment of this condition.

Speaking of her award, Fiona says: "It is a great honour to be this year's recipient of the Michael Mason prize. The award represents the increasing interest in osteoarthritis research in recent years and desire to find new ways to treat the disease: osteoarthritis remains the leading cause of joint pain and disability in the UK, and major reason for joint replacement. Joint injury is the single greatest risk factor for developing osteoarthritis, which often affects people in mid-life.

"Our work relating to the responses of joint tissues to injury and subsequently in individuals with recent joint injury represents work over many years by myself and colleagues at the Kennedy Institute for Rheumatology. By testing discoveries from the laboratory in clinical studies, we aim to find better of ways of predicting the onset of arthritis, and developing medical treatments which can slow or prevent arthritis, and improve joint pain for people with the condition".

The Michael Mason Prize is awarded by the Heberden Committee for excellence in clinical or scientific research in the field of rheumatology. Dr Michael Mason was a renowned clinical rheumatologist, qualified from Oxford and St Bartholomew's Hospital London. His practice was in the wider aspects of rheumatology and together with Dr W S Tegner he established an associated academic professorial unit in Rheumatology in the University of London at the London Hospital Medical College. Additionally he was instrumental in the development of the Bone and Joint Research at the London Hospital Medical College.

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