Professor Anan Shetty, Orthopaedic Surgeon awarded top honour for pioneering stem cell research

Professor Anan Shetty, an orthopaedic knee surgeon at KIMS Hospital in Maidstone and a Chair of Orthopaedics and Director of stem cell research at Canterbury Christ Church University, is to be presented with the Hunterian Professorship and Medal for 2017 by the Royal College of Surgeons.

As one of the most prestigious international awards for surgeons, recognising significant contributions made to surgical, anaesthetic or dental science, it has been awarded to Professor Shetty for his research on stem cells in articular cartilage repair. Professor Shetty has been working on innovative surgical procedures for cartilage repair in collaboration with Professor Seok-Jung Kim, Director of Cell Therapy at the Catholic University and St. Mary’s Hospital, Seoul, South Korea.

Professor Shetty, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, comments, “I’m honoured to accept the Hunterian Professorship and Medal for 2017 from the Royal College of Surgeons. Using stem cells to support the growth of new cartilage in joints has the potential to broaden the possibilities of treatment for patients who require knee replacements. The research we have undertaken demonstrates that the regrowth of cartilage in damaged knees can delay the need for knee replacement surgery and in some cases prevent it. This could have a significant impact on patients, especially younger people, if they do not have to undergo surgery.”

As the research progresses, Professor Shetty is seeing results continue to improve. The National Institute for Care and Excellence (NICE) is now reviewing the treatment which involves taking stem cells from the bone marrow of a patient. They are then separated and treated with a special gel before being implanted into a patient’s damaged cartilage where they grow forming new cartilage.

“We are immensely proud of Professor Shetty’s achievement and privileged that he is able to offer patients at KIMS Hospital another treatment option for knee replacement. As the largest independent hospital in Kent we feel strongly that our patients should have access to the most advanced procedures locally, removing the need to travel outside of the county. Professor Shetty is one of the country’s leading orthopaedic surgeons offering exceptional care for the people of Kent,” says KIMS Hospital Chief Executive, Simon James.

The award will be presented to Professor Shetty early in 2017 at a ceremony held at the Royal College of Surgeons. He will also deliver his Hunterian Lecture to an invited audience.