Blog posts

Prof Nicholson speaks to Select Science about Personalised Medicine: The Future of Healthcare

NicholsonProf Nicholson this month spoke with Select Science about personalised medicine and how delivering the correct treatment for the right individual, based on their genes and environment, could be the future of healthcare.

He spoke in detail about how the use of mass spectrometry and NMR spectroscopy enables an overview of hundreds of thousands of metabolites in a single analytical run covering a large number of physiological and metabolic processes. For more information watch the video here.


Waters Corporation acquires iKnife technology


Waters, a leading analytical instrument manufacturer, announced this week that it acquired the technology, called Rapid Evaporative Ionisation Mass Spectrometry (REIMS), from MediMass Ltd, a company created by the iKnife’s inventor, CSM’s Professor Zoltan Takats.

For the past three years, Waters and MediMass have worked in partnership with researchers at Imperial to investigate applications of REIMS in surgery, which could potentially provide surgeons with diagnostic information about the tissue they are cutting in real time. Read more

CSM PhD students awarded funding to host PG symposium

StratiCSM STRATiGRAD PhD students Fran Jackson and Nancy Georgakopoulou are organising (together with UCC students) a postgraduate symposium for the CSM STRATiGRAD PhD students and students from the Alimentary Pharmabiotic centre (APC) at University College Cork (UCC).

The symposium will be focussing on gut microbiome research using molecular biology and multi-omics technologies . The event will be held at the end of September at Imperial College, which will include lectures from the section leaders, postgraduate current work posters and oral presentations, as well as a social networking aspect. Both centres are interested in the interaction of the gut microbiome and host health, this networking event is to integrate knowledge and training between our centres. By interacting at a postgraduate level, it will promote awareness in students from both parties and open up the opportunity for future, and hopefully, lasting collaborations.

Fran and Nancy have been awarded £1500 towards this event by the Imperial College Graduate School through their Cohort Building Activity Funding Scheme. More details of the event will be posted as soon as they are announced.

Surgery and Cancer in the news:




The BBC’s Bang Goes the Theory features a story on the intelligent knife.



Darzi IGHI


Professor Darzi and other health experts gathered at the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday 17th June, for the Centre for Health Policy’s ‘eHealth for Better Care Conference’.





New app developed by Dr Stephanie Russ, Honorary Research Fellow in S&C, which helps patients ensure best outcome from surgery.



CSM World Cup 2014

Team montageFriday the 11th of July 2014 saw the first ever Division of Computational and Systems Medicine Football World Cup, which took place in the Secret Garden at South Kensington Campus.

Eight teams from across the globe, made up of PhD students, researchers, admin staff and academics (including the Head of Division), battled it out to be supreme champions of the CSM World Cup. The event was accompanied by an enthusiastic crowd of colleagues and family, and an amazing spread of food and drinks to fuel the troops.Food

After 11 gruelling matches the Mundo All Stars emerged as victors and revelled in their accomplishment at the elaborate closing ceremony, where they were presented with winners medals and of course the coveted CSM World Cup trophy. The event turned out to be a huge success so let’s hope this will be the first of many CSM World Cup events!Football!

Departmental news:

Dr Mike Wilson from the section of Anaesthesia, Pain Medicine and Intensive Care was invited to give a talk on ‘Inflammatory Mechanisms of Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury’ at the British Association of Lung Research annual conference, held at Imperial on the 10 & 11 July 2014.

Congratulations to the following staff from the Division of Surgery who have all received awards:

Sheraz Markar: NIHR Doctorate Research Fellowship
(Non-Invasive Exhaled Breath analysis for the Prediction of Oesophago-Gastric Cancer)

Sophie Doran: Imperial College Charity Research Fellowship
(Use of exhaled breath to diagnose cancer recurrence)

Shobhit Arya: Gerhard Buess Technology award, 10 World Congress of Endoscopic Surgery, EAES, Paris 2015 (Multispectral imaging of tissue oxygenation and perfusion in bipolar radiofrequency induced anastomoses: a study of tissue viability in the acute porcine model)

Magill Symposium “Enhanced Recovery: Beyond the Guidelines”

Programme version 2The Section of Anaesthetics, Pain Medicine and Intensive Care, at Imperial College, and Magill Department of Anaesthesia, Intensive Care and Pain Management at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, act as host for Magill Symposium, held annually at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. Each year, the organisers choose a relevant topic that falls within the broad discipline of Anaesthesia/Perioperative Medicine.

Eminent scholars/speakers are invited to comment on current controversies and also to present recent advances in their field of expertise.  The symposium covers both the basic science elements as well as clinical aspects. This year’s focus is Enhanced Recovery: Beyond The Guidelines. Speakers include Professor Djillali Annane (Versailles), Drs Nicholas Hart (Kings College), Richard Keays (Chelsea & Westminster), Sherif Awad (Nottingham), William Fawcett (Surrey) and Toby Smith (East Anglia).

This year, the Magill Lecture will be presented by Dr Phillip J. Devereaux, Perioperative Medicine and Surgical Research, Hamilton General Hospital, Canada.

Event Date: WEDNESDAY 19th November 2014

Time: 13.00 – 18.00 h
Location: Gleeson Lecture Theatre, Lower Ground Floor, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London

Please contact FH Noormohamed:
Anaesthetics, Pain Medicine & Intensive Care
Chelsea & Westminster Hospital, 369 Fulham Rd, London SW10 9NH.
Tel: 0203 315 8816


Combining Academic and Family Life panel discussion

The Department of Medicine Academic Opportunities Committee warmly invites you to a

Panel Discussion on Combining Academic & Family Life

Tuesday 15th July 2014, 12:00-14.00

Café area, Wolfson Education Centre

Hammersmith Hospital Campus, Du Cane Road

Do you currently combine an academic or research career with family life?   Do you look to the future and think about how it might be done, or wonder how colleagues manage?  Do you have thoughts on how the College and our departments can foster a culture where both can flourish?

Come and join colleagues and a panel of researchers and academics, including the Provost, Professor James Stirling, for a panel discussion over lunch, chaired by Professor Jenny Higham, Faculty of Medicine Vice-Dean for Education & Institutional Affairs.

All academic & research staff & students welcome

Please e-mail Meriel ( if you are planning to come so that we know numbers for catering

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust staff rises to the challenge to improve safety in our hospitals

Eleven teams of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust staff pitched their ideas at a Dragon’s Den style Imperial Patient Safety Challenge event for a chance to win up to £30,000 funding.

On 18 June, the NIHR Imperial Patient Safety Translational Research Centre (PSTRC) challenged Imperial College Healthcare staff to submit their applications for projects that are able to improve patient safety and quality of care in our hospitals.

More than 80 applications were received, which were shortlisted to 11 ideas that encompassed healthcare apps, service improvement methodologies, point of care diagnostics and education and training. Up to ten winning projects will be provided with a maximum of £30,000 each and expert support to transform these ideas into innovative products or patient safety intervention within our Trust.

Opening the event, Professor the Lord Ara Darzi, Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation and the NIHR Imperial PSTRC said: “We hope that this event will be a stimulus not just to the clinicians and nurses, but to any members of staff to come up with ideas to improve patient safety in the NHS. If we are able to find some brilliant projects, there may be an opportunity to disseminate the idea across the network.”

The finalists pitched their ideas to the ‘Dragons’, a panel of prominent patient safety experts, which included Professor the Lord Ara Darzi; Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, journalist and author; Martin Bromiley, pilot and patient safety advocate; and Shona Maxwell, Chief of Staff, Office of the Medical Director, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.

The pitchers represent varied professions within the Trust, including clinicians, nurses, pharmacists, allied health professions and managers, and the ideas that they presented stimulated enthusiastic debates amongst the panel and an audience with a keen interest on patient safety.

Special mentions go to Krishna Moorthy, Clinical Senior Lecturer in Upper Gastrointestinal, who pitched a new app idea for surgical site infection surveillance and improvement. With the help of his team of a junior doctor and nurse, they put up a dynamic act of how clinical scenarios would improve if this app was implemented. The last team to pitch, Lee Bolton, Senior Specialist Speech & Language Therapist, and Karima Collins, Interim Clinical Service Lead, Adult Acute Speech & Language Therapy, presented ways to improve safety of thickened liquids delivery for patients who find it difficult to swallow, and spiced things up for the panel when they provided the ‘Dragons’ with the materials to make Stage 1 syrup consistency.

Closing the event, Shona Maxwell said: “I think it was an excellent event where the standard of presentation was very high. From a Trust perspective, it is great to see the types of projects that we can incorporate into the Trust to improve patient safety.”

Professor the Lord Ara Darzi said: “We’re interested in not just the end product, but the process, the frontline staff working on the delivery of care. I would like to invite anyone out there who we haven’t been able to reach to come forward with your creative ideas to make a significant impact on patient safety. If we have any funding left from this event, we may very well be holding a similar event after summer.”

Winners will be announced in the next few days.

The PSTRC at Imperial is part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

Departmental June report

  • Professor Jeremy Nicholson attended 62nd ASMS Conference on Mass Spectrometry and Allied Topics in Baltimore – 15-19 June 2014
  • Professor Elaine Holmes had a Keynote Lecture entitled: Gut Microbiome-Host Metabolic Interaction: a Metabolome-Wide Association Study, Seminars Amphithéâtre Marguerite de Navarre – Marcelin Berthelot Collège de France, Paris – 02 June 2014
  • Professor Naomi Chayen has been selected as a management committee member on a European Commission – European Cooperation in Science & Technology (COST) – a new collaborative initiative entitled ‘From molecules to crystals’ involving over 30 groups across Europe.
  • Lord Darzi participated in the UN hosted Cavendish Global Health Impact Forum UN Meeting in New York as part of British Healthcare System Panel – 5 May 2014
  • Professor Lesley Regan was invited to speak on “Treatment of recurrent pregnancy losses” and “Recurrent miscarriage and abnormal uterine bleeding” at the 36th National Congress of the South African Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (SASOG), Cape Town, 18-23 May 2014 and “Modern management of recurrent miscarriage” at the XXIV European Congress of Perinatal Medicine”, Florence, Italy, 7 June 2014
  • Professor Wendy Atkin gave a talk on ‘Bowel Cancer prevention by Screening, Surveillance & Early Diagnosis’ to Cancer Research UK and members of the Bobby Moore Fund at St Mary’s Hospital on 11 June 2014
  • Dr Anthony Gordon, Clinical Senior Lecturer, has been appointed as “Director of Research” for the Intensive Care Foundation
  • Professor Philip Bennett has been appointed as Research Director for Women’s and Children’s Health at Imperial College Healthcare Trust.
  • Professor Darzi provided an overview and update on the aims and work done by the London Health Commission at the North West London Whole Systems Integrated Care Launch Event on 15th May 2014. Over the past 6 months partners from across North West London worked to co-design solutions to deliver whole systems integrated care.
  • Professor Hani Gabra, as Chair of the organising committee for the British Gynaecological Cancer Society (BGCS) in conjunction with NCRI Gynaecological Cancer Clinical Studies Group, wishes to announce the 6th annual EURTOC meeting on 12th July 2014. For a full programme, registration details and further information, please visit the website

Winner of the 2014 Bioanalysis Outstanding Contribution Award

WilsonCongratulations to Professor Ian Wilson who has just been announced as the winner of the 2014 Bioanalysis Outstanding Contribution Award.

Prof Wilson was nominated by his colleagues, who highlighted his pioneering research in drug metabolism, molecular toxicology and metabonomics, and his generosity as a collaborator, teacher and mentor. One nominator commented “His wide knowledge and deep devotion to the field inspires his collaborators and gives them the tools to surpass logistic or technical limitations.”

To see more details about the award and Prof Wilson’s interview please visit the Bioanalytics Zone website.