About the University of Leicester

Andrew Fry

Professor  Andrew Fry We are sad to report that our dear friend and colleague Andrew Fry, Professor of Cell Biology in the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology passed away on 30 April 2024 following a long illness borne with great fortitude.

  • Andrew's funeral will be held at the Parish Church of Saint Catharine, Houghton on the Hill on Friday 17 May 2024 at 2.15pm. No flowers please. Donations, if desired, may be given to Open Hands Leicester and Cancer Research UK c/o AJ Adkinson and Son Funeral Directors. You are warmly invited to join the family for refreshments after this service at The Italian Greyhound, 14 London Road, Great Glen where you will be most welcome.

Andrew was first and foremost a scientist – a particularly insightful, rigorous and innovative scientist. His speciality was to use elegant methods in cell biology to understand and visualise how cells divide and what goes wrong in cancer, when control of cell division is lacking, leading to genetic instability and invasive behaviour. He pioneered our understanding of a family of kinase enzymes, the NEK kinases, which he had discovered play key roles in cell division and other cellular processes through regulating microtubule organisation.

Andrew’s second love was to support and develop those around him. Everyone – student or post-doc - that worked with Andrew has the highest regard for him, as a mentor, a scientific leader and as a friend. “Inspirational” is the description that is used again and again by those that have benefited from Andrew’s input.

Andrew was also a generous contributor of his time and effort to support the wider community in Leicester. He was an outstanding Dean of Research in the College of Life Sciences (2014-2020) – enormously valued advisor to the Head of College and supporter of every aspect of research in the College. He was also Chair of the Leicester Wellcome Trust Institutional Strategic Support Fund and ensured that these funds were very wisely used. Andrew was also hugely valued as Deputy Head of Department for Biochemistry from 2010-2015.

Andrew Fry graduated from the University of Oxford in 1989 with a First Class Honours degree in Biochemistry, and then completed a DPhil at the Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford. Andrew next undertook postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Professor Erich Nigg, initially as a Royal Society Postdoctoral Fellow at the Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research (ISREC) in Lausanne (1993-1995), and then as a Maître-Assistant in the Department of Molecular Biology at the University of Geneva, Switzerland (1995-1998).

Andrew was appointed to a lectureship in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Leicester in 1999, receiving a Lister Institute Senior Research Fellowship in 2000. He quickly established himself as a principal investigator and gifted teacher. He was promoted to a Readership in 2005 and to a Personal Chair in 2008. Andrew was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an active member of the Biochemical Society and the British Society for Cell Biology. His research has been supported by the Wellcome Trust, Cancer Research UK, BBSRC, MRC, Worldwide Cancer Research, and Kidney Research UK.

We send our sincerest condolences to Sue and Andrew’s children Emily, Sam and Harry at this very sad time.

Details of funeral arrangements will be communicated when known.

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