UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology



Head of Department: Professor Kenneth J Smith, BSc, PhD

The main focus of the department is research into multiple sclerosis (MS) and we employ a broad range of basic and clinical methods, including clinical therapeutic trials. 


The department consists of over 82 investigators organized into ten research groups, with over 22 PhD students.  The department is recognized worldwide as a centre of excellence for MS research, building on the strong foundation established by Prof. Ian McDonald, memorialized in the internationally-accepted “McDonald Criteria” for disease diagnosis. 

Research areas

Our research activity truly spans “from bench to bedside and back again”, described in outline below, and in more detail on the personal websites of the members:- 



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The department houses most or all of the activities of three research units, namely the Queen Square Multiple Sclerosis Centre and the Neuroimmunology Unit.

Clinical trials

A number of MS clinical trials are currently ongoing within the department, including 2 investigator-led trials and 11 industry-led.  Indeed, there is an excellent balance of discovery and translational science, with two novel lines of fundamental research progressing from the laboratory to ongoing or imminent multiple clinical trials. Prior trials included one for Natalizumab.

Current Funding

Current research funding is £16m, with grants from the UK and USA Multiple Sclerosis Societies and other charities, UK Research Councils, and several pharmaceutical companies.


We have an active international seminar programme, with meetings approximately every 2 weeks.

Further information  

If you would like to know more about our activities, or you would like to join or support our research, please contact either the members of staff directly (contact details on their websites), or Prof. Kenneth Smith (+44 (0) 207 679 4013).

The department is looked after by our department manager Charlotte Burt (+44 (0) 207 679 4171), and research assistants Sharmeen Haque and Tina Holmes.