She is one of eight researchers to receive the award, which recognises the UK¹s most promising leaders in medical health research.
The professors were selected by an international panel of experts following a competitive process open to candidates nationwide. Each professor will receive around £1.5m of funding for their research into a range of conditions that affect millions of patients across the UK.
Dr Knight will use the funding for her research project, which aims to improve care for pregnant women and babies with life-threatening illnesses.
Severe illnesses in pregnancy and early childhood can be devastating for parents and families,¹ said Dr Knight. ŒThis funding will be key to helping us work out how best to treat both pregnant women with life threatening illnesses and babies who require surgery in early life.
Importantly, it will allow me to undertake new work investigating how children and their parents are affected by early surgery and the need for multiple hospital visits, and how we can make care better for them.¹
Health minister Anne Milton said: The professors will be given the opportunity to develop their research programmes, but most importantly they won't stop treating NHS patients. This will help make sure that new ideas make the leap from the bench to the bedside. We want to see medical research advance, and to do that it is essential that we nurture the very best researchers to the benefit of NHS patients.¹
Professor Dame Sally Davies, Chief Medical Officer and Chief Scientific Advisor at the Department of Health said: Each one of these professors already has an impressive track record, and I look forward to working with them in the future and seeing them flourish. They will provide much needed research leadership in their chosen field, and help us build more capacity and capability within the NIHR in very important areas. Our original intention was to appoint only five new research professors, but the international expert panel found the quality of applications so high that they advised eight awards should be made.¹
National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit
National Institute for Health Research