Three years on from being named L’Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science European Laureate, the newly titled Professor Dame Frances Ashcroft has been recognised in the Queen’s birthday honours list.
Dame Frances, a geneticist and ion channel physiologist, is based at Trinity College, Oxford where she is a professorial Fellow. As Director of the University’s Gene Centre, she has pioneered research into diabetes, and alternative treatments for children diagnosed with the illness. Dame Frances also co-Directs OXION, a 4 year PhD programme administered by the Wellcome Trust, specialising in ion channels and membrane transport in health and disease. Dame Frances is most well-known for discovering the missing link between increased blood sugar and insulin secretion. She was the first scientist to identify ‘neonatal diabetes’ and its development from genetic mutations.