Dr Martin Reichardt of the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology explains how his institution, which can claim to have saved two million lives, is now looking for the next Alexander Fleming to save two million more.

THE University of Oxford has been famous for its teaching and ground-breaking research for centuries.

Last year it was ranked best in the world for Medical Sciences by the Times Higher Education, which highlights the enduring quality of the medical research that takes place in Oxford.

This March 15 will see the return of the annual Postdoc Symposium at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology.

The Dunn School is a university department recognised worldwide as a prime research institution.

With a claim to being the kick-starter of the antibiotic era through the development of penicillin, the work that has been carried out at the Dunn School is estimated to have saved more than two million human lives.

You only get to be one of the oldest and best research institutions in the world if you continuously think outside the box and dare to take on the great challenges facing human health.

The Dunn School currently divides its focus into five major areas: the microbes that attack us, our defence against these microbes, vaccine development, cancer research and therapy, and finally an understanding of how our bodies develop from early embryos to full human beings.

The next life-changing scientific advances are in the making.

The 2018 Postdoc Symposium will serve as a rare display of the science that is happening right now.

The scientists holding postdoc positions are an international mix of researchers, including people freshly out of their DPhil/ PhD studies as well as academics with several years of experience.

The discoveries presented at the symposium therefore include some of the most cutting-edge research in the world.

Following a selection process, 10 of the most prominent young scientists from the Dunn School will be given the opportunity to present their work.

A panel of local experts will then select the best talk based on a combination of exciting scientific advances, as well as the ability of the scientist to convey the importance of their work.

This year, a particular focus has been placed on making the scientific goals and advances accessible to the general public.

With increasing pressure for research funding, it is important that everyone is invited to celebrate the latest breakthroughs – especially when they happen just around the corner.

The event is not open to the general public, but all the nominees and the winner of the prestigious ‘best talk’ prize will be named shortly after.

In addition to this, a film with a more comprehensive explanation of the winning science will be produced by Voices of Oxford and be made available online.