Bruce McGorum


Accepting PhD Students

Personal profile


Bruce graduated from the University of Edinburgh as BSc (Veterinary Pathology) in 1983 and BVM&S with Distinction in 1985. After working for three years in mixed veterinary practice in Buckinghamshire, he returned to Edinburgh as the Horserace Betting Levy Board Resident in Equine Respiratory Diseases, under the guidance of Professor Padraic Dixon. He was awarded a PhD in equine chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in 1992, and has continued in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences ever since. He was awarded the Animal Health Trust Veterinary Achievement Award in 2004.

He is currently Head of the Equine Section at the University of Edinburgh which provides specialist veterinary care for horses referred by practising veterinarians throughout Scotland and Northern England. His research focuses on equine pulmonary disease and equine grass sickness. He teaches equine medicine to veterinary undergraduates and post-graduates.


1983 BSc (Hons) (Vet Pathol) Grade 2(1). Thesis 'Immune mechanisms of the small intestine'. University of Edinburgh 

1985 BVM&S with Distinction, University of Edinburgh

1992 PhD. 'Studies in the aetiopathogenesis of equine COPD'. University of Edinburgh.

1996    Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Certificate in Equine Medicine (Int. Med.)

2001    Diplomate of the European College of Equine Internal Medicine: Invited Specialist and Founding Diplomate

2009    RCVS and European Specialist in Equine Medicine (Internal Medicine)

2016  Fellowship of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons by Meritorious Contributions to Knowledge

Current Research Interests

Equine internal medical disorders, particularly equine respiratory diseases and grass sickness.

Research students


  • Dr TJ Brazil (2000) Pulmonary neutrophil recruitment, activation and clearance in equine COPD.
  • Dr RS Pirie (2001) The role of inhaled endotoxin in equine COPD. (Winner of the Joan O’Brien Award for the most outstanding presentation by a postgraduate student at the Veterinary and Comparative Respiratory Society Conference, uniquely for both 2000 and 2001).
  • Dr K Dacre (2005) Mast cells and mast cell proteinases in equine heaves.
  • Dr J Keen (2007) Studies on equine laminitis. Registered with Glasgow Caledonian University.
  • Anna Karagianni (2016) Characterisation of the equine monocyte/macrophage. EBRC/Pfizer funded.
  • Amy Miele (2015) Comparative pulmonary fibrosis. MRC Capacity building studentship in molecular imaging.
  • Luanne Hunt (2016-) Do mycotoxigenic fungi cause equine grass sickness? The Horse Trust 

External expert of post graduate committee

  • Ruth Clements (PhD 2016)

 VTRI Steering Committee

  • Dr Lisa Boden (2007) The role of sexual contact networks in the potential transmission of infection within a thoroughbred stud population.


  • Mr D Railton (1994) An investigation into lymphocyte subpopulations in equine COPD.
  • Ms C Marley (1996) A study of local and serum antibodies in equine COPD.

 MSc by Research

  • Kirstie Pickles (2000) Methodology for equine bronchoalveolar lavage fluid cytological analysis.
  • Constanze Fintl (2001) Evaluation of urinalysis as a diagnostic aid in grass sickness.
  • John Keen (2004) The role of microvascular dysfunction in the pathogenesis of laminitis.
  • Emily Peaston (2004) Differential protein expression in autonomic ganglia from horses with grass sickness. Registered with University Glasgow. 
  • Jenny Swain (2004) Factors influencing the airborne dust concentration in the breathing zone of stabled horses.
  • Nicole du Toit (2005) Mast cells in equine cyathostomiasis.
  • Jennie Henderson (2008) Association of hyperlactataemia with survival in equine neonates.
  • Bryony Waggett (2009) Studies on equine grass sickness.
  • Catriona Lyle (2011) Sudden death in racehorse.
  • Claire Stratford (2013) Anthelmintic resistance in equine cyathostomins in Scotland. Awarded with Distinction.
  • Rachel Jago (2016) Equine grass sickness. Awarded with Distinction.



BSc Equine studies

  • Ms S Tothill (1995) Equine COPD.
  • Ms J Ellison (1997) Airborne endotoxin concentrations in three equine management systems.
  • Ms C Heard (2000) Is equine grass sickness associated with low pasture sulphur levels?
  • Ms A Milne (2001) Evaluation of a laser Doppler-iontophoresis system in the assessment of microvascular function in the horse.
  • Ms K Hayward (2003) Evaluation of phenylephrine eye drop test in the diagnosis of grass sickness. (runner up for prestigious Eqvalan Duo Thesis of the Year Award 2005)
  • Ms B Waggett (2005) The prevalence of Clostridium perfringens and its toxins in horses with grass sickness. (runner up for prestigious Eqvalan Duo Thesis of the Year Award 2006).
  • Ms C Wylie Association of equine grass sickness with regional soil and weather patterns. (2006-2007)


BSc Zoology (Hons)

  • Ms Lorna      Croft, Is there a role for skin biopsies in successful diagnosis of equine      grass sickness. Start Jan 2003


BSc Microbiology and Infection Honours

  • Robert      Marsham, An investigation into the role of clostridial toxins in equine      grass sickness, employing equine primary intestinal cultures. Start Jan      2005


BVM&S UG Year 3 Professional & Clinical Skills

BVM&S UG Year 4 Equine

BVM&S UG Year 4 Professional & Clinical Skills

BVM&S UG Year 5 Final year rotations

MSc Equine Science

MVetSci AVP Equine



School/Campus administration

PG teaching staff

UG teaching staff

Student support

Equine teaching

Clinical Expertise and Specialisation

Equine medicine

Administrative Roles

Member Senior Management Group

Head of Equine Section

College Fitness to Practice Committee

School / Campus Administration, Equine Medicine

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), 'Studies in the aetiopathogenesis of equine COPD', University of Edinburgh

Award Date: 1 Jan 1992

Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine & Surgery, With Honours, University of Edinburgh

Award Date: 1 Jan 1985

Bachelor of Science, BSc (Hons) (Vet Pathol) -'Immune mechanisms of the small intestine' , University of Edinburgh

Award Date: 1 Jan 1983


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