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Marion Ecob-Prince obituary

Marion Ecob-Prince obituary

Marion Ecob-Prince, my wife who passed away at the age of 74, was a scientist who dedicated her career to researching the neuromuscular junction. Her work took her to laboratories in New York, Newcastle, and Glasgow where she pioneered tissue culture techniques to investigate the development of various neuromuscular disorders that can lead to debilitating pain, muscle degeneration, and numbness.

Marion was raised in Heanor, located in Derbyshire. Her parents were Anne (nee Ford), who worked as an assistant in a post office, and John Ecob, a delivery driver. She received her education at Spondon Park grammar school in Derby, where she excelled in fencing and served as the captain of the netball team and head girl. In 1968, she enrolled at Bristol University to pursue a degree in microbiology and during her first year, she achieved victory in the British universities ladies fencing championship in the foil category.

After completing her studies, Marion received a Kennedy scholarship to attend Harvard University in the United States for one year. During her time there, she gained the title of New England fencing champion.

After her return, she pursued a PhD at Cambridge University, focusing on the interaction of measles and Dawson disease viruses in nerve cell cultures at Addenbrooke’s hospital.

In 1975, she received her PhD and went on to work as a researcher at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. Later on, she moved to Mount Sinai hospital in the same city.

In 1978, she went back to the UK and became a member of the muscular dystrophy division at Newcastle general hospital, working with neurologist John Walton. Her main focus was on Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a serious type of the condition that predominantly affects males.

In 1988, she transitioned to Glasgow University to apply her tissue culture method in exploring the potential of the herpes virus as a carrier for transporting medication to the nucleus of cells. She then served as an assistant registrar at Newcastle University’s medical school in 1994 until her retirement in 1999.

In 1973, Marion and Simon Johnston were wed, but divorced in 1982. However, I married them in 1985 and we shared numerous enjoyable vacations together, including camping trips in the Washington and Oregon mountains and exploring various parts of Europe on foot.

Marion had a strong interest in being active, including hobbies such as walking, skiing, squash, and cycling. However, her greatest enthusiasm lay in her meticulously designed and maintained garden. Her approach to gardening mirrored her scientific approach, which involved careful observation, experimenting, and detailed record-keeping.

Me and her twin brother, David are the ones left to carry on her legacy.

Source: theguardian.com