Coventry University professor recognised by Innovate UK – Women in Innovation Awards

Professor Helen Maddock wins national award for efforts to transform pharmaceutical drug testing

Professor Helen Maddock has been recognised in this year’s Innovate UK – Women in Innovation Awards and has secured a £50,000 grant to further expand the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in her efforts to transform the pharmaceutical drug testing process.

The national Innovate UK – Women in Innovation Awards recognise visionary British female entrepreneurs who drive forward their novel innovations and business ideas.

Coventry University’s Professor Helen Maddock says she feels empowered to inspire the next generation of women scientists and innovators after winning such a prestigious award.

I see this award as an opportunity… to inspire female scientists towards business innovation and entrepreneurship, making a real difference to women in science and their career aspirations – Professor Helen Maddock

With years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, including working for a precursor of AstraZeneca, one of the leading companies involved in the UK’s Covid-19 vaccine roll-out, Professor Maddock is now the founder, chief scientific officer and director of InoCardia, a Coventry University spinout company which aims to minimise the harmful side effects on the heart caused by pharmaceutical drugs.

Helen said: “I see this award as an opportunity which can enable me to inspire female scientists towards business innovation and entrepreneurship, making a real difference to women in science and their career aspirations.

“Being a female entrepreneur is definitely not easy – I have had many ups and downs in my career which really has felt like a roller coaster ride at times, but forming a successful company has been life changing. I feel this award will provide me with further confidence and support as I aim to become an assured and successful CEO, as well as helping to inspire the next generation of female scientists.”

Covid-19 side effects testing

During the Covid-19 pandemic, InoCardia received £50,000 of funding to test side-effects of Covid-19 treatments on the heart as well as a further award worth £25,000.

Coventry University has supported the organisation since its inception, creating bespoke labs in the Alison Gingell building to house InoCardia’s equipment and operations in an industry-standard environment.

Professor Maddock’s £50,000 grant will be used to expand InoCardia’s award-winning technology, with the company looking to diversify its artificial intelligence product with the end goal of making the pharmaceutical testing process more thorough and meticulous.

Making a difference

Helen added: “I’m delighted with the progress InoCardia has been able to make since the company was founded and it’s amazing to see our efforts recognised with such a prestigious award and a grant that will undoubtedly make a big difference.

“The support we’ve received from the university has been excellent and I have every confidence that we can continue to make great strides in our mission to make a real impact on the pharmaceutical drug testing process.”


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