Edinburgh Research Explorer

Tom Russ

UoE Honorary staff

Profile photo

Willingness to take PhD students: Yes

Education/Academic qualification

Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice , University of Edinburgh
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), University of Edinburgh
An integrated investigation into dementia risk factors: insights from geography, record linkage, and individual participant meta-analysis
Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, University of Edinburgh
Bachelor of Science, University of Edinburgh
Medical Science with Honours in Psychology

Professional Qualifications

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, FHEA
Certificate of Completion of Training in Old Age Psychiatry, CCT
Membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, MRCPsych


Tom trained in medicine and psychiatry in Edinburgh, the Highlands, and London and undertook doctoral training at the University of Edinburgh. He is a consultant psychiatrist in NHS Lothian with clinical responsibility for two hospital-based complex clinical care units as well as working at the Memory Assessment and Treatment Service. He is Director of the Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Research Centre and an honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences, both at the University of Edinburgh.

Research Interests

  • Dementia epidemiology and risk reduction
  • Disease mapping
  • Environmental risk factors

My research in a nutshell

I have been investigating geographical variation in dementia risk for a number of years and we have found substantial variation with increased risk in the north of Scotland, Sweden, and Italy, compared to the south. In Sweden, even after taking account of genetic effects, the risk of dementia was still two-to-three times higher in the north compared to the south which suggests an environmental effect. Therefore, I am now focusing on environmental risk factors for dementia, including air pollution and vitamin D deficiency (which relates to sunlight).


Publications on PubMed

Google Scholar profile


Division of Psychiatry www.pst.ed.ac.uk

Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Research Centre www.alzscotdrc.ed.ac.uk

Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology www.ccace.ed.ac.uk

Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences www.ccbs.ed.ac.uk

Edinburgh Neuroscience www.edinburghneuroscience.ed.ac.uk

Scottish Neuroprogressive and Dementia Research Network: http://edin.ac/2vLcyRh (formerly the Scottish Dementia Clinical Research Network)

Positions available

I'd encourage any students interested in dementia research to contact me about potential projects - for an SSC or otherwise. I have recently supervised projects on temporal trends in dementia rates, music and dementia, and the concept of personhood in dementia so I’d be very pleased to hear from you whatever your interest.


Looking for a PhD project in Edinburgh Neuroscience? All available projects are listed here:


Clinical Expertise and Specialisation

Professional memberships

Fully registered, on the specialist register (old age psychiatry) with a license to practice, General Medical Council (6097438)

Member, Royal College of Psychiatrists

Senior Associate Member, APPCIOS (Association for Psychodynamic Counselling and Practice in Organisational Settings)

Trainee member, British Psychoanalytic Council

Member, APP (Association for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in the NHS)

Member, Human Development Scotland

Member, British Medical Association

Fellow, Royal Society of Medicine

Research activities & awards

  1. Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

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