Meet Stuart Brierley, Ferring Innovation Grant recipient

Some descriptionTitle: Associate Professor, PhD, Flinders University and South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute, Australia

Research Project: Venom-derived NaV1.1 inhibitors as novel candidates for treating chronic visceral pain associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS.)

Chronic pain from the gut affects over 15% of people around the world, but treatments are lacking. We are targeting the underlying cause of mechanical pain, the sensory nerves, as a potential treatment.

What motivated you to research this area? There are millions of people suffering from debilitating clinical conditions such as IBS, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and over-active bladder. I know people who suffer terribly from chronic visceral pain associated with these conditions. Most people suffer in silence, because they feel like they can't discuss their problems because it is ‘taboo’. Like all diseases, we can only make progress via acceptance, education and, crucially, medical research. This is why the Ferring Innovation Grants are so important.

Most exciting thing about your research project? Potentially finding a new therapy for millions of global sufferers is what drives my research group. Chronic visceral pain is also a fascinatingly complicated research area, which we investigate with lots of cool state-of-the-art techniques. 

Most challenging part of your research project? Combining and integrating all the cool techniques! It is challenging research, but also extremely rewarding. 

How would you describe yourself in 3 words? Determined, ambitious, easy-going.

Interesting fact about yourself? I drive a 2016 Mustang to work. If you’re a car fan, enough said!

Visit www.ferring-research.com/ferring-grants to learn more about the Ferring Innovation Grants Program.

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