PRC:Blackpool has a new Research & Development Manager
Professor Frank Martin has joined Blackpool Teaching Hospitals which hosts PRC:Blackpool, to head up its Research, Development and Innovation Division. Frank is a multi-disciplinary bio-imaging research scientist who has had a long collaboration and work experience with the NHS.
Starting in PET imaging at Hammersmith Hospital he then moved to University College Hospital (London) to do a PhD in liver toxicology then spent 6 years as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Institute of Cancer Research (Sutton) looking at mechanisms and molecular epidemiology of breast cancer and prostate cancer, looking at the possible common causes of both conditions.
From the Institute of Cancer Research Frank moved to Lancaster University and became their first professor of chemical biology.
Reflecting on his time there, he says “I ran a very research-active team, we published extensively, I had many PhDs, many post-docs and also clinical research fellows plus overseas visitors. I collaborated widely including with folk from Preston -- Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and other NHS trusts. I’ve developed a number of projects. I had a very wide broad envelope of research projects including in gynaecology, obstetrics, different aspects of oncology, in neurodegenerative disease and I went beyond that into other research projects which were tangential such as food security and other areas.”
On his role here at Blackpool, Frank comments “I’m very happy to be here, it’s a very exciting time. With the changing demographic, we have the Patient Recruitment Centre. We also have the BRC which is the Biomedical Research Centre and that’s allowing a close alignment with the University of Manchester. What also excites me about the North West is, it’s small but it’s nimble, people are facilitating and you have a readiness to participate in studies that you may not see elsewhere and I see that as a major opportunity.
The greatest return in the economy in terms of growth and increasing GDP is through research and scientific research. There has been a little fall off in the UK in terms of research & development. In terms of personal growth, development, career continuing professional development, research gives you an opportunity to develop yourself. There’s also the satisfaction when you do research, there’s nothing greater than when you do a research project and you find a new way of doing something that hasn’t been done before or you discover something new. It’s a new frontier in terms of exploration, you could say.”