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Genetics of bone and joint disease

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Personal profile


I graduated in Medicine from Glasgow University in 1978 and underwent higher medical training in General Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.  I previously held the chair of Medicine and Bone Metabolism at the University of Aberdeen and moved to Edinburgh University in 2005 where I now hold the Chair of Rheumatology. I am academic director of Edinburgh University's Msc in clinical trials and lead for the Kennedy Trust funded MB-PhD programme.  I hold an honorary consultant rheumatologist position with NHS Lothian and am clinical lead for the osteoporosis service and clinical director of the rheumatology service.  I have researched widely on the pathogenesis, treatment and the genetic basis of Paget's disease of bone and other bone  diseases. I am currently chair of the Paget's Association,   joint editor-in-chief of the scientific journal Calcified Tissue International and editor of Davidson's Texbook of Medicine.  I was chair of the Commission for Human Medicines for the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Authority of the UK between 2013 and 2021 and continue to advise the MHRA on matters relating to medicines for women's health and rheumatology. 

My research in a nutshell

My research currently focused on the pathophysiology and management of bone diseases.  I have a special interest in Paget's disease and I am chief investigator of the Paget-Advance programme of research which is funded by the European Research Council. I also have research projects ongoing into the genetic determinants of response to osteoporosis treatments, the pathogenesis of pregnancy associated osteoporosis, and the treatment of osteogenesis imperfecta. The ultimate aim of these projects is to translate the knowledge gained in the laboratory to improve clinical outcome for patients.


I am programme director for the MSc in Clinical Trials, director of Kennedy Trust MB-ChB programme and I also contribute to teaching of medical undergraduates in rheumatology.   

Clinical Expertise and Specialisation

I undertake clinics in general rheumatology  and have a special interest in osteoporosis and metabolic bone diseases. I have extensive experience in clinical trial design and methodology. 

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Medicine, Pathogenesis and management of cancer-associated hypercalcaemia, University of Glasgow

Award Date: 1 Jan 1987

Bachelor of Medicine, University of Glasgow

Award Date: 1 Jan 1978


  • R Medicine (General)
  • Bone disease, rheumatology


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