University of Dundee

Professor Irwin McLean awarded Buchanan Medal by Royal Society

20 Jul 2015

Professor Irwin McLean of the University of Dundee has been awarded the prestigious Buchanan Medal of the Royal Society.
The Buchanan Medal is awarded by the Royal Society, the world’s oldest scientific academy in continuous existence, for distinguished contributions to the medical sciences.
Irwin McLean is Professor of Human Genetics and Scientific Director of the Centre for Dermatology and Genetic Medicine at Dundee. He is a world renowned expert in the genetics of skin diseases, and his research group has identified the causative genes for more than 20 human diseases.
Professor McLean said, “I have to confess to being stunned to receive this award from the Royal Society – when the initial notification came through I had to re-read it half a dozen times to make sure it was correct!
“This is a tremendous honour for me personally but also for the hard work and incredible successes of my research group, which has put us and the University of Dundee at the forefront of skin disease research.  I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my many tremendous colleagues across the Colleges of Life Sciences and Medicine for their help, guidance and support.  The highly collaborative and collegiate biomedical research environment at the University of Dundee has accelerated my research in innumerable ways over the years.
“I also have to thank the many collaborators and patients who work with us. Without their participation we could not hope to make the advances we have in understanding debilitating skin diseases and, hopefully now, developing treatments for them.”
The Buchanan Medal is awarded biennially (in odd years) “in recognition of distinguished contribution to the medical sciences generally”.
The award was created from a fund to the memory of the physician George Buchanan FRS and was first awarded in 1897. Originally it was awarded once every five years, but since 1990 it has been awarded once every two years.
The Royal Society is the national academy of science of the UK and the Commonwealth and is one of the world’s most prestigious institutions of science. Professor McLean was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014.
Professor McLean’s work is supported by a number of charities and trusts including the Wellcome Trust, Medical Research Council, DEBRA, PC Project and Fight for Sight.