Professor Scott Waddell Elected a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences


Congratulations to Senior Research Fellow in Neurobiology Professor Scott Waddell, who was recently one of 11 Oxford scientists elected to a fellowship at the Academy of Medical Sciences. These fellowships are awarded in recognition of exceptional contributions to the advancement of medical science through innovative research discoveries, and for translating scientific developments into benefits for patients and the wider society.

50 biomedical and health scientists were elected to the prestigious fellowship this year, from a pool of almost 400 candidates. Scott was recognised for his work in furthering understanding of neurobiology, through his group’s study of cellular-resolution neural circuit mechanisms of memory-directed and motivated behaviour, using genetics and the relatively small brain of the fruit fly Drosophila. Their research has discovered a previously unforeseen heterogeneity of function within neurons in the dopaminergic reward system. In addition, their work exemplifies how acutely altering the function of defined subsets of neurons can serve as an effective way of learning how neural circuits operate.

Scott is the first Pembroke scientist to be elected to the fellowship since Professor Irene Tracey in 2015. Others elected alongside him this year include Professor Sarah Gilbert, who led the team at Oxford to develop the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19, as well as Professor Jonathan Nguyen-Van-Tam, the UK Government’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer.

The Pembroke community offers warmest congratulations to Scott on this exceptional achievement.