Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences (NDCN)
Tell us a bit About your role
I lead a research group that investigates circadian rhythms, which are rhythms in physiology and behaviour that follow a day/night cycle. I read for a DPhil at Oxford and then joined NDCN as a Roche Post-Doctoral Fellow. I received a Biotechnology and Bitrialological Sciences Research Council David Phillips Fellowship three years ago, with which I established my group to look at how the circadian clock senses its environment in order to be able to report the right time. I also teach Biomedical Sciences at Oriel College and I am the founder of a spin-out company, Circadian Therapeutics.
What is the most meaningful aspect of your work?
Research into sleep and circadian rhythms is at a very exciting time at the moment as we find answers to the fundamental questions of why we sleep and what happens in our brains while we sleep. The findings are of relevance across all domains of health, as sleep and circadian rhythm disruption is widespread in society and a debilitating feature of many illnesses.
Can you tell us about something you’ve done, contributed to that you’re most proud of?
Our work has taken a drug from the bench to the clinic, and therefore has the chance to make a real difference in people’s lives.
What changes would you most like to see in the Medical Sciences in the next 100 years?
I would like to see approaches in medicine become more holistic and focused on overall wellbeing, as our research is showing how interconnected physical and mental health are with lifestyle.