Technology Seed Funding

Scope of Award

2019 is SULSA’s Year of Technology.  To celebrate this SULSA provided funding for collaborative projects from SULSA member Universities in Scotland that are using Scottish facilities.

This fund is to provide researchers with funding to access the wide variety of excellent facilities in Scotland, and to kick start innovative new research projects driven by cutting-edge technologies in the life sciences field.

Projects should show demonstrable potential for securing funding leverage. This scheme is not for continued funding of existing projects.

Awarded Projects

Dr Kumiko Samejima (Edinburgh), Dr Martin Waterfall (Edinburgh), Dr Alison Dun (Heriot Watt), Dr Raif Yuecel (Aberdeen)
Facility: Edinburgh Super Resolution Imaging Consortium and Iain Fraser Cytometry Centre Aberdeen
Project: Establishing technologies to study the mechanism of chromosome segregation


Dr Denise Hough (Glasgow), Professor Ruth Andrew (Edinburgh)
Facility: Edinburgh MS Core
Project: Developing mass spectrometry imaging of steroid production within the brain


Dr Andrew Ward (Strathclyde), Dr William Peveler (Glasgow), Dr Damion Corrigan (Strathclyde)
Facility: University of Glasgow Chemical Biology Laboratory
Project Title: Fingerprinting iron-scavengers with low- cost electrochemical sensors


Dr Yijin Liu (Dundee), Paul Fyfe (Dundee), Magnus Alphey (St Andrews)
Facility: X-Ray Crystallography (Dundee)
Project Title: A new design for macromolecular crystals dehydration sets


Dr Elad Katz (Dundee), Dr Maiwenn Kersaudy-Kerhoas (Heriot Watt), Dr Alvaro Conde (Heriot Watt), Dr Paul Andrews (Dundee)
Facility: National Phenotypic Screening Centre
Project Title: An optically clear prototype for the culture and detection of circulating tumour cells


Dr Helen Bridle (Heriot Watt), Dr Eulyn Pagaling (James Hutton), Dr Lisa Avery (James Hutton), Dr Valentina Busin (Glasgow)
Facility: Analytical Chemistry Facility
Project Title: Low-cost sensor technology to enable end- user testing of drinking water quality: paper-based microfluidics for the detection of faecal indicator organisms


Dr Zahra Rattray (Strathclyde), Dr Mairi Sandison (Strathclyde), Dr Richard Burchmore (Glasgow)
Facility: Glasgow Polyomics
Project Title: Disruptive Technologies for Nanoparticle Corona Profiling


Dr Nicholas Rattray (Strathclyde), Professor Ruth Andrew (Edinburgh)
Facility: Edinburgh Clinical Research Facility MS Core
Project Title: MALDI Imaging Mass Spectrometry investigations in to energy metabolism re- programming during brain ageing


Dr Marwa Daghem (Edinburgh), Dr Adriana Tavares (Edinburgh), Professor David Newby (Edinburgh), Dr Mark MacAskill (Edinburgh), Dr Andrew Sutherland (Glasgow)
Facility: Edinburgh University Facilities
Project Title: Validation of new Positron Emission Tomography (PET) radiotracer for imaging inflammation in humans


Dr Nicola Cook (St Andrews), Dr Mazdak Salavati (Edinburgh), Maaria Kankare (University of Jyväskylä), Dr R. Axel Wiberg (University of Basel)
Facility: Edinburgh Genomics
Project: “Pure Baltic”: sex and gene expression in the cold-adapted fly Drosophila montana


Professor Gail McConnell (Strathclyde), Dr Carsten Gram Hansen (Edinburgh), Ms Shannan Foylan (Strathclyde), Ms Lisa Kölln (Strathclyde)
Facility: Mesolab, Strathclyde
Project Title: MesoTIRF: developing axial super- resolution microscopy across a 6 mm field of view


Dr Rose Ruiz Daniels (Edinburgh), Dr Richard Taylor (Edinburgh), Dr Daniel Macqueen (Edinburgh), Dr Ross Dobie (Edinburgh), Professor Samuel Martin (Aberdeen), Dr Diego Robledo (Edinburgh)
Facility: Edinburgh Genomics
Project Title: Single cell transcriptomics as a disruptive tool for aquaculture research: a cellular atlas of the liver response to infection in Atlantic salmon


Dr Mattia Marenda (Edinburgh), Dr Davide Michieletto (Edinburgh), Dr Dimitrios Papadopoulos (Edinburgh), Professor Nick Gilbert (Edinburgh), Dr Sebastian van de Linde (Strathclyde)
Facility: Edinburgh Super Resolution Imaging Consortium
Project Title: Investigating the Bio-Physical Properties of SAF-A Assembly via Live-Cell Super- Resolution Microscopy, Machine Learning and Molecular Dynamics Simulations


Dr Stephen Wallace (Edinburgh), Dr Karl Burgess (Edinburgh), Dr Richard Burchmore (Glasgow)
Facility: Glasgow Polyomics
Project Title: Transcriptomic Identification of New Biocatalysts in Living Microbial Cells


Dr Mark Thomas Shaw Williams (Glasgow Caledonian University, Dr Valerie Ferro (Strathclyde), Dr Rothwelle Tate (Strathclyde), Dr Scott Davidson (Strathclyde), Dr Helen Wheadon (Glasgow)
Facility: Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University
Project Title: Do acute myeloid leukaemia cell derived extracellular vesicles re-educate macrophages towards a leukaemia supporting subtype?


Dr Graeme Whyte (Heriot Watt), Professor Neil Henderson (Edinburgh), Dr Ali Kermanizadeh (Heriot Watt)
Facility: Edinburgh Super Resolution Consortium
Project Title: Rotational 3D Microscopy for Novel in vitro Nanotoxicology Studies


AMR Seed Funding

Scope of Award

Following on from SULSA’ 2018 AMR conference, this fund is supported by the Scottish Universities Life Sciences Alliance (SULSA) and is aimed at forming new collaborations to address challenges surrounding antimicrobial resistance.


  • This funding is to enable researchers to gather preliminary data and develop proposals with the aim of attracting further funding from external sources.
  • Projects should show demonstrable potential for securing funding leverage.
  • This scheme is not for continued funding of existing projects.
  • Researchers can apply for a maximum of £8,000 for a 12 month project.
  • We expect to award between 5-6 grants in this call.
  • Interdisciplinary projects are encouraged.
Awarded Projects
  • Prof. Rosalind Allen (Edinburgh), Prof. Gail McConnell (Strathclyde) and Nicholas Bommer (Edinburgh): Catheter-associated urinary tract infections: linking AMR to biofilm formation.
  • Dr Till Bachmann (Edinburgh), Prof. Andrew Porter (Aberdeen), Dr Soumya Soman Palliyil (Aberdeen) and Dr Holger Schulze (Edinburgh): Electrochemical biosensor for the detection of bacterial quorum sensing compounds in respiratory diseases.
  • Dr Katherine Duncan (Strathclyde), Dr Eulyn Pagaling (James Hutton Institute), Prof. Tim Daniell (James Hutton Institute), Prof. Rosalind Allen (Edinburgh) and Dr Simon Titmuss (Edinburgh): Microbial microfluidic drug discovery – 21st Century innovation to accelerate the Fleming antibiotic discovery pipeline.
  • Dr Stephen Fox (Glasgow), Dr Cosmika Goswami (Glasgow) and Dr Kerry Pettigrew (St Andrews): Genome Sequencing of Carbapenemase- Producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) from Scottish Hospitals for AMR genes and their mobile elements.
  • Dr Gillian Halket (Strathclyde) and Prof. Carol Munro (Aberdeen): Antifungal potential of compounds produced by thermophilic Actinobacteria from compost, upon strains of azole resistant Aspergillus fumigatus.
  • Dr Charles Knapp (Strathclyde), Dr Fiona Henriques (University of the West of Scotland), Prof. Rosalind Allen (Edinburgh), Dr Andrew Free (Edinburgh), Dr Eulyn Pagaling (James Hutton Institute), Dr Lisa Avery (James Hutton Institute) and Dr Richard Allan (James Hutton Institute): The effect of drinking water treatment on antimicrobial resistance.

Dementia Seed Funding

Scope of Award

To mark the arrival of the UK Dementia Research Institute in Scotland, the Scottish Universities Life Sciences Alliance (SULSA) and The University of Edinburgh are providing funding for collaborative projects between Scottish Universities in the dementia space.

This fund is to provide researchers with an opportunity to form new collaborations and apply for seed-funding to kick start innovative new research projects in the dementia field.

Projects should show demonstrable potential for securing funding leverage. This scheme is not for continued funding of existing projects.

Interdisciplinary projects are encouraged.

Awarded Projects
  • Dr Jenni Harvey (Dundee), Dr Gayle Doherty (St Andrews) and Dr Stephen Martin (Dundee): Evaluating the brain penetrability and cognitive enhancing actions of leptin- derived hexamers
  • Dr Christian Wozny (Strathclyde) and Prof. Tara Spires-Jones (Edinburgh): Assessing the role of GABAergic interneurons in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Dr Gayle Doherty (St Andrews), Dr Jenni Harvey (Dundee) and Dr Rebecca Goss (St Andrews): Receptor interactions of bioactive leptin fragments – a promising therapeutic lead for dementia
  • Prof. Danielle Gunn-Moore (Edinburgh), Prof. Joanna Wardlaw (Edinburgh) and Prof. Frank Gunn-Moore (St Andrews): The use of voxel-based morphometry as an in vivo tool to assess brain atrophy in the brains of domestic cats
  • Prof. Andrew Tobin (Glasgow), Ms Paulina Valuskova (Glasgow) and Dr Shuzo Sakata (Strathclyde): Mapping the neuronal networks in neurodegeneration

Optical Imaging Funding

Scope of Award

This funding was provided by the Scottish Universities Life Science Alliance (SULSA), Scottish Imaging Network (SINAPSE) and Scottish Universities Physics Alliance (SUPA) and is aimed at new research, and establishing or fostering research collaborations between academia and industry to drive novel optical imaging research in the context of healthcare and medicine. 

Funding can be sought for a broad range of activities relating to any research or partnership activity with industry, e.g.

  • Consumables
  • Facilities access
  • Travel to consortium meetings
  • Travel for establishing network connections
  • Attend or host meetings of academic and external partners at any stage during the preparation of applications
  • Run workshops to share experience and best practice with regard to Industrial collaborations
  • Co-ordinate meetings to engage with SMEs and to share best practice with regard to this engagement
  • Funding for academics travelling to consortium meetings where they introduce a UK-based SME
  • Showcasing skills and capabilities
  • Participating in specific networking activities both for policy influencing and project preparation
Awarded Projects
  • Dr Calum Brown (University of Edinburgh) and Optos (Dunfermline, Jano van Hemert): Liquid Crystal Lasers: Towards Retinal Disease Diagnostics
  • Dr Ali Dun (Heriot Watt University) and Devro (Glasgow): Using Advanced Microscopy to Study the Process of Fat Digestion for Application(s) in the Food Science Industry
  • Dr Leandro Lemgruber (University of Glasgow) and Zeiss (UK), Nikon (UK), Bitplane (Germany): Facilities Open Day Series in Connection with the Scottish Microscopy Group
  • Dr Richard McCracken (Heriot Watt University) and Scientifica (UK): Wavelength–versatile Pulsed Laser Sources for
    Multiphoton Microscopy
  • Dr Tom MacGillvray (University of Edinburgh) and Optos (Dunfermline, Jano van Hemert): Building a Transatlantic Optical Eye Imaging Consortium
  • Dr Patricia Martin and Prof. Gail McConnell (Universities of Glasgow Caledonian and Strathclyde) and Tissue Solutions (Glasgow): Skin Deep: New Mesoscopic Imaging of Large Tissue Volumes at High Resolution
  • Dr Shigeng Song (University of the West of Scotland) and Wideblue (Glasgow): Development of a Low Cost Miniaturised Hyperspectral Imaging Camera Incorporating Linear Variable Optical Filters for Medical Imaging Applications