Professor Ellie Barnes

MRC Senior Research Fellow, Experimental Medicine and Jenner Investigator

For successful Oxford immunologist and mother of two, Professor Ellie Barnes, one of the keys to happiness is having all the answers. From an inquisitive child to a science “obsessed” mother of two, Ellie started out in Medicine before taking on a PhD in 1999. After completing her PhD in Hepatitis C and T cell Immunology,  Ellie continued to focus her research on immune responses to therapy, before diving into translational work and vaccine development programs in HBV and HCV. In addition to her vaccine work Ellie is also leading an international MRC funded stratified medicine consortium called Stop HCV, a collaboration between 22 partners from around the UK (industry, scientists, and clinicians) integrating viral and host genetic datasets with immune parameters and clinical data and driving new clinical studies.

One of just three researchers in the UK to be awarded an MRC Senior Fellowship,  Ellie says she is feeling positive about her future in science, as the award will support her research group for the next 5 years. While Ellie admits she could not have maintained balance between work and home life without her husband “friend and advocate”, who takes an equal share in childcare, she also feels the support she has received from her colleagues, and the Nuffield Department of Medicine, has been critical.

“Having good mentors is key, no matter what field you’re in. I think it’s wonderful that NDM are putting an official mentorship program in place. Having someone who believes in you and can go in and bat for you is really important. NDM have shown consistent support through the highs and the lows-you need that support for a long and successful career in academic medicine”