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2020 NIHR ACF PES Liverpool Platform Science and Bioinformatics



2020 NIHR Academic Clinical Fellowship in Priority Research Themes

HEE Local Office: North West
Medical School: University of Liverpool
Research Theme: Platform Science and Bioinformatics
Specialty Options: Neurology

Plain English Summary

The University of Liverpool and the Mersey Deanery are seeking to employ an Academic Clinical Fellow (ACF) in Neurology from August 2020. This exciting post will provide the trainee with basic specialist training in Neurology, and dedicated research training within the theme of Neurological Infectious Diseases (led by Professor T Solomon), or Epilepsy (led by Prof A Marson), or both. This highly innovative and successful programme, which is unique to the UK, provides subject-based specialty clinical and research training in epilepsy and neurological infectious diseases, and through this allows exposure to translational research that integrates the basic elements of neurology with infectious diseases. Liverpool’s Brain Infections Group has 25 members including academic staff, Fellows funded by Wellcome, Medical Research Council (MRC), NIHR and others, Post Docs and students, with a good mix of clinical and non-clinical supervision. The Epilepsy Research Group has similar strong funding base, and broad scope and is highly integrated with molecular and clinical pharmacology and with biostatistics. The programme provides a unique inter-disciplinary environment, allowing trainees to develop the clinical and research skills necessary to build a research career in their own area of interest within the sphere of neurological infections or epilepsy. It is underpinned by major research programmes, supported by substantial external funding (>£30M). Most ACFs in the Neuroscience Training Programme have subsequently obtained their own highly competitive Fellowships (including MRC, Wellcome, and NIHR). In addition to Professors Solomon and Marson, the research teams include four Senior Clinical Lecturers and as well as clinical and non-clinical lecturers.
Trainees spend academic blocks of 3 months per year in a laboratory or clinical setting which may include field visits. Recent/current academic juniors have spent time at Wellcome Major Overseas Programme in Malawi, the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), India, and with partners in Brazil.

The research component of the programme takes advantage of Liverpool’s international reputation for clinical and translational research in neurological infections and epilepsy. We lead Brain Infections UK, a portfolio of clinical studies in the UK, and Brain Infections Global, which underpins our latest international programme on neurological infectious diseases. The epilepsy research programme is part of the Institute of Translational Medicine which brings together leading epilepsy researchers and pharmacologists, major components include randomised trials, health informatics, magnetic resonance imaging, genomics and systems medicine.

Research disciplines range from mechanisms of disease studies through clinical and translation studies to public health interventions. We have a range of potential projects, but tend not to be too prescriptive, encouraging instead new fellows to work in areas that interest them. For both epilepsy and neurological infections patients often present with acute neurological emergencies. Some of our most exciting new directions have been instigated in this way.

Academic Programme Directors
Professor Tom Solomon (Neurological ID) –
Professor Tony Marson (Epilepsy) –