Thursday, 28 March 2019


The Osler Lecture

Professor Sir Nilesh Samani

"New understanding of coronary artery disease through genomics"

Nilesh Samani is Professor of Cardiology at the University of Leicester and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist at the Cardiac Centre, Glenfield Hospital, Leicester. He was previously Head of the Department of Cardiovascular Sciences at the University (2003-2016) and Director of the NIHR Leicester Cardiovascular Biomedical Research Unit (2009-2016). His main research interests are in cardiovascular genetics and biological ageing, especially focused on understanding their contribution to coronary artery disease. 
Since 2016, Professor Samani has also served as Medical Director of the British Heart Foundation. The BHF is an internationally-leading research charity which funds over £100 million of new research into heart and circulatory diseases each year. The Medical Director is responsible for overseeing the BHF’s research funding and medical activities. 

Plenary Lecture

Professor Owen Sansom

"Using preclinical models of cancer to stratify new cancer treatments"

In a research career spanning 17 years, Professor Sansom has published over 235 papers and made major contributions to understanding some of the key molecular drivers of epithelial cancer.

Professor Sansom received his PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 2001 before continuing his postdoctoral research using in vivo models of cancer at the University of Cardiff. In 2005, he established his own laboratory at the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute in Glasgow. Since then, Professor Sansom has been instrumental in determining the molecular hallmarks of colorectal cancer. This has included defining the roles of the tumour suppressor protein APC and the WNT signalling pathway as well as the involvement of intestinal stem cells in tumourigenesis. His laboratory uses both in vivo and 3D in vitro models to recapitulate colorectal and pancreatic cancers to investigate the molecular mechanisms underpinning tumourigenesis and to identify novel drug targets. More recently, Professor Sansom's work in pancreatic cancer has focused on using in vivo models to stratify patient therapy and to understand how combinatorial therapies targeting both the tumour and surrounding tissues may lead to better therapies.

Professor Sansom has also played an important leadership and management role at the CRUK Beatson Institute, particularly in ensuring its researchers are able to access the most sophisticated genetically engineered models of cancer. In 2011, he was appointed Deputy Director of the Institute and has been its Director since August 2017. Professor Sansom is also more broadly involved in driving cancer research strategy in Glasgow - he was recently appointed Director of the Institute of Cancer Sciences, University of Glasgow and leads the CRUK Glasgow Centre, which aims to translate findings from the laboratory into the clinic for the benefit of cancer patients.

In 2007, Professor Sansom won the BACR/AstraZeneca Young Scientist Frank Rose Award in recognition of his contributions to translational cancer research and in 2012 he was awarded the CRUK Future Leaders in Cancer Research Prize for his outstanding achievements. He was also elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2012 and a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2017.


Friday, 29 March 2019


The George Griffin Lecture

Professor Dame Sally C Davies FRS FMedSci 

"Building and Maintaining a Global Response to AMR"

Dame Sally was appointed Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England and Chief Medical Advisor to the UK Government in March 2011, having held the post on an interim basis since June 2010.  Dame Sally is an independent advisor to the UK Government on medical matters, with particular responsibilities regarding Public Health.
From 2004-2016, Dame Sally was the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) for the Department of Health (DH), where she was actively involved in NHS R&D from its establishment and founded the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). In 2013, Dame Sally became a Non-Executive Director of Genomics England Ltd, wholly owned and funded by DH, to sequence 100,000 whole genomes from NHS patients by 2017.
Dame Sally was a member of the World Health Organization (WHO) Executive Board 2014-2016 and has led delegations to WHO summits and forums since 2004.  She advises many governments and organisations on health and policy, holding positions on a number of Boards.
Dame Sally advocates globally on AMR.  She has spoken on AMR at numerous events including, the World Health Assembly side events, the G8 Science Ministers’ meeting in 2015, the Global Health Security Initiative in 2015, and the UN General Assembly side event in 2016.  She was chair of the 2013 AMR forum at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) and is chair of the WHO Strategic and Technical Advisory Group on AMR.  Most recently, Dame Sally has been appointed a co-convener of the UN Inter-Agency Co-ordination Group on AMR, set up in response to the AMR declaration made at UNGA 2016. 
Dame Sally received her DBE in 2009. She was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014 and a member of the National Academy of Medicine, USA in 2015.


Plenary Lecture

Professor Cathie Sudlow

"UK Biobank: combining big data and open science to accelerate understanding of health and disease"

Cathie Sudlow graduated in medicine from the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford, with postgraduate training in medicine and neurology in Oxford, Plymouth, Worthing and Edinburgh. She obtained her MSc in Epidemiology (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine) in 1997 and DPhil (University of Oxford) in 2000. From 2000, she has been based at the University of Edinburgh, where she is Chair of Neurology and Clinical Epidemiology and, since 2017, Director of the Centre for Medical Informatics in the Usher Institute for Population Health Sciences and Informatics.

Her research focuses on large scale collaborative efforts to determine the causes (genetic, environment and lifestyle) of - and the effects of treatment on – common diseases of middle and older age. She has played a major role in such initiatives: to establish the role of antithrombotic therapy in preventing heart disease and stroke; to investigate differences between stroke subtypes; and to discover genes that influence stroke. Since 2011, she has been Chief Scientist of UK Biobank, whose unparalleled depth and breadth of open access phenotype and genotype data on 500,000 UK adults make it the UK’s single most important investment in population health research.

Prof Sudlow is PI or co-I on several multi-million pound research awards for population health, stroke and dementia research. She directs the newly established Scottish substantive site of Health Data Research UK and was elected as a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2018.