2020 Prizes and Awards

Along with our first online AGM, we have also held our first ever online Prizes and Awards ceremony. Chaired by our President Stephen O’Connor we were delighted to be able to welcome members and guests to accept their awards virtually.

Firstly Professor Nick Stone was awarded the Academic Gold Medal. This is awarded to any IPEM member who has a substantial and sustained track record, at an outstanding level, of contribution to the advancement of academic practice; related to physics and engineering applied to medicine and biology. Professor Nick Stone is Professor of Biomedical Imaging and Biosensing at the College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, University of Exeter. He is an IPEM Fellow who holds positions in two leading NHS Foundation Trusts and has spent almost 20 years in the NHS leading clinical teams developing novel diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. Professor Stone has become a world leader in establishing the field of biomedical vibrational spectroscopy for medical diagnostics, since beginning this work in the mid-1990s

Our Academic Early Career award winner was Catarina Veiga, Research Fellow at University College London in Radiotherapy. This award is given to a member who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of Academic practice related to physics and engineering applied to medicine and biology in the first 12 active years of their career. Catarina received her PhD 4 years ago and has made excellent academic contributions in the field of radiotherapy. She identified daily inaccuracies in radiotherapy dose delivery to assess the need for adaptation, and exploited in-room volumetric imaging, one-beam CT, and an image analysis technique to verify the daily dose delivered.  After investigating feasibility and pitfalls of her methodology in head and neck cancer treatment at UCL Hospital, she was seconded to University of Pennsylvania to develop solutions tailored for proton therapy and lung cancer with Dr Kevin Teo and IBA, a proton therapy vendor. This was the first-time cone-beam CT was used in a proton therapy machine. Software and workflows developed have since been made freely available by the industrial partner. Caterina remains at UCLH researching radiation-induced lung damage.

Mark Grattan was the winner of our SPIERS’ PRIZE which is awarded to a member of IPEM for outreach. Mark is a Consultant Clinical Scientist and Head of Dosimetry in the Radiotherapy Physics Service, Northern Ireland Cancer Centre, Belfast. He has been contributing to outreach in order to explain his profession to the general public and those who may be interested in following in his footsteps for over 20 years. Most recently, in February 2020, he successfully applied for a grant from the Institute of Physics Ireland branch to hold an open day at the cancer centre in Belfast to educate the public on the work of the Radiotherapy Physics team.

In a year of firsts for IPEM, it was fitting that we introduced a new category, The President’s Prize. This is to recognise members of IPEM who have given outstanding service to the Institute. The winners of the President’s Gold Medal in 2020 were Dr Anna Barnes, Associate Professor at UCH, Mr Justin McCarthy, Biomedical Engineer from Cardiff, Dr Richard Black, academic engineer from Strathclyde. We were really pleased to welcome all three of our prize winners to tell us a bit about what they have done for IPEM and the impact it has made. You can listen to these on the website shortly.

Finally we awarded the best paper prizes. The Jack Perkins Prize for best paper in Medical Engineering and Physics in 2019 went to Adrian Falkenberg, Paul Drummen, Michael  M. Morlock, Gerd Huber, Institute of Biomechanics, Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH), for their paper Determination of local micromotion at the stem-neck taper junction of a bi-modular total hip prosthesis design.

The Martin Black Prize for best paper in Physiological Measurement 2019 was awarded to Karin Schiecke, et al from the Institute of Medical Statistics, Computer and Data Sciences  and the Lab for Autonomic Neuroscience, Imaging and Cognition (LANIC), Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy Jena University Hospital, Jena, Germany for their paper Brain-heart interactions considering complex physiological data: processing schemes for time-variant, frequency-dependent, topographical and statistical examination of directed interactions by  convergent cross mapping

Finally the Roberts’ Prize for best paper in Physics in Medicine and Biology in 2019 and we were delighted that one of the authors, Xiao Liang from University of Texas, was able to present the paper Generating synthesized computed tomography (CT) from cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) using CycleGAN for adaptive radiation therapy