Introducing our 2022 Joint British Geriatrics Society / Dunhill Medical Trust Doctoral Training Fellows

Dr Marc Österdahl (left) and Dr Shiv Bhakta (right)

We are delighted to introduce Dr Marc Österdahl and Dr Shiv Bhakta as the fourth and fifth recipients of our Joint Doctoral Fellowship with the British Geriatrics Society (BGS).

We launched the fourth round of the clinical fellowship, which aims to support front-line healthcare professionals with an interest in developing a career in ageing-related research, in early 2022.

Applications were assessed by the expert panel, who then made the final decision on funding (the success rate for this round was 40%). The panel were:

  • Adeela Usman (University of Nottingham and current Joint BGS / DMT Doctoral Training Fellow)
  • Professor Andrew Clegg (University of Leeds and DMT Research Grants Committee member)
  • Professor Carmel Hughes (Queen’s University Belfast and DMT Research Grants Committee member)
  • Dr Emily Henderson (University of Bristol and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the BGS)

Dr Österdahl’s fellowship aims to understand whether taking menopausal hormone replacement therapy (mHRT) reduces the risk of frailty in later life, by looking at mHRT’s effects on measures of frailty as well as clinically-relevant outcomes such as hospital admission.

Dr Bhakta’s fellowship is investigating whether the level of calcium build-up in the carotid arteries impacts the risk of recurrent stroke in older people. If so, then the level of calcium in a patient’s arteries could be used to predict their risk of having a second stroke and measures taken to improve their care.

The panel were impressed by the relevance of both Marc and Shiv’s proposals, and commented on the potential of their findings to contribute to the care of older people. We’re really excited to follow their progress over the next few years.

You can read more about Marc and Shiv’s research, and hear both of them speaking about their fellowships, on the BGS website.