The UK’s Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) announced a couple of days ago that it had appointed Michael Wakelam, currently of the University of Birmingham, to be its director as of January 1 next year. Wakelam looks to be a good match for the institute, which conducts research and training in the mechanisms of cell communication and gene regulation. His own area of expertise is cell signaling, with a focus on the regulation of signalling pathways in normal and cancer cells and in inflammatory responses. 

“I look forward to the stimulation of leading such a successful and focused centre, both in terms of the science and the increasingly successful interactions with biotech businesses at the Babraham campus,” he said. 

Unsurprisingly, the BBSRC’s notice made no mention of the racial discrimination case that been brought against the BBSRC last year over the selection process for the director’s job....

In October, an employment tribunal dismissed the claims, leading BBSRC chief Julia Goodfellow to note that the council appoints people “regardless of researchers’ gender, race, creed, sexual orientation and other personal factors.” 

In March this year, Singh’s case against the Roslin triggered further furore when during the course of questioning, Ian Wilmut testified that his role in the creation of Dolly the sheep was a supervisory one. Thankfully, the storm in a teacup generated by that comment died down quickly. Singh, meanwhile, is now working at Germany’s Borstel Research Center.

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