UCL Division of Medicine


Division of Medicine Promotions 2024

27 June 2024

Congratulations to those who have been promoted in the Division of Medicine this year

Colourful Confetti falling against a blue background


Dr  Liam Browne (Wolfson Inst for Biomedical Research)   

Liam Browne Profile Photo

Non Clinical Senior Research Fellow  to   Associate Professor
Liam Browne joined the UCL Wolfson Institute to establish a lab in 2016, previously being based at Harvard Medical School with Prof. Clifford Woolf and the University of Manchester with Prof. Alan North FRS. His lab investigates brain mechanisms at a systems level using behavioural approaches, optogenetics, two-photon microscopy, machine vision and machine learning. Liam was awarded a Marie Curie Fellowship from the European Commission, and a Sir Henry Dale Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust and the Royal Society.

Dr Johanna Donovan Education (Division of Medicine)

Johanna donovan profile photo
Lecturer (Teaching) to Associate Professor (Teaching)
Johanna was awarded a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Manchester in 2009. After joining UCL in 2009, she gained substantial research experience as a Post-Doctoral Research Associate - first in the group of Prof David Abraham in the Centre for Rheumatology and Connective Tissues Disease, and then in Prof Jill Norman’s research group in the Centre for Nephrology. Her research interests include the cellular mechanisms and biomarkers in fibrotic disease, kidney disease and HE education. Johanna has written and reviewed journal articles and presented and conferences and meetings. 
Johanna is a dedicated educator and has worked in a full-time teaching role since 2017. She is Head of Centre for Undergraduate Education, Deputy Programme Director for Student Wellbeing in the Division of Medicine, Academic Lead for Year 3 BSc Applied Medical Sciences and Safeguarding Contact. She leads modules and teaching across all years of the FMS UG programmes and in PGT. Johanna is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Dr Ian Harrison (Department of Imaging)    

Ian Harrison

Non Clinical Senior Research Fellow to Principal Research Fellow
Ian completed his BSc in Pharmacology at the University of Southampton prior to moving to Imperial College London for masters studies in Experimental Neuroscience, and also Experimental Physiology and Drug Discovery with Bioimaging. Ian then stayed at Imperial College London to complete a PhD under the supervision of Prof David Dexter, studying neuroprotective mechanisms in Parkinson's disease using imaging to quantify disease progression in the rodent brain. Ian then moved to UCL’s Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging as a postdoctoral researcher, to lead a collaborative project with Eli Lilly looking to develop imaging strategies to assess pathology in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease. Ian started a research group at CABI in 2019, thanks to parallel research fellowship awards from Alzheimer’s Research UK and Parkinson’s UK. The group studies the role of clearance systems in the brain, and their involvement in the development and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Dr James Irving (Respiratory Medicine)

James Irving profile photo

Non-clinical Research Associate to Principal Research Fellow
James have expertise in areas which include: structural biology including protein crystallography, biochemistry including polymerization and aggregation kinetics, biophysics including fluorescence spectroscopy and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, computational methods including single-particle reconstruction from electron microscopy data, molecular modelling and image processing, and methods to assess protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions. He has supervised several Masters’ and PhD students to degree completion as well as postdoctoral scientists and  has been actively involved in collaborations with pharmaceutical companies with the purpose of developing a drug to prevent polymerization of alpha-1-antitrypsin in the liver of people with alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency.

Dr Tammy Kalber (Department of Imaging)

Tammy Kalber

Non Clinical Principal Research Fellow to Professor of Cell and Molecular Imaging

Tammy's work centres on developing innovative imaging techniques using nanochemistry and molecular engineering to monitor cell therapies in vivo. Tammy intends to correlate quantitative delivery and localisation of cells, with the assessment of cell viability, in order to investigate the efficacy of cell therapies and predict their potential therapeutic outcomes.

This work utilises two cell labelling strategies: direct labelling and genetic reporter labelling. Nanoparticles and low molecular weight compounds are used to directly label cells with imaging agents. With genetic reporter labelling, the cells are genetically modified to express a gene that can incorporate an imaging probe into viable cells. Combining these two techniques allows cells to be tracked and assessed in vivo using a multitude of different imaging platforms (MRI, PET/SPECT/CT, optical) across scale (whole body to micrometre range).

Dr Anastasia Kalea Education (Division of Medicine)    

Dr Anastasia Kalea profile photo

Associate Professor (Teaching) to Professor (Teaching)

In 2011 Dr Kalea joined UCL as a BHF Chair Scholar (Prof Steve Humphries) to explore the genetic (telomeres) and epigenetic (miRNAs) mechanisms linked to cardiovascular diseases. She has been collaborating with the Hatter Cardiovascular Institute on the role of miRNAs in exosomes and with the UCL Gene Ontology (GO) team for the creation of curation guidelines for consistent functional annotation of miRNAs (available on “GO Consortium wiki”).

Dr Kalea is an Academic Programme Lead for the MSc in Obesity and Clinical Nutrition and a member of the UCL Nutrition team, leading modules for the MSc in Clinical and Public Health Nutrition, MSc in Dietetics, BSc in Nutrition and Medical Sciences teaching across all nutrition programmes. She has received Global Engagement Funding from UCL for a collaborative MSc teaching programme in Nutrition and Public health with United Arab Emirates University (UAEU). 

Dr Kalea is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a registered Dietitian with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), and a member of the British Dietetic Association.
She serves as an Honorary Trustee of the Nutrition Society, s a scientific committee member in national and international scientific conferences, she sits in the advisory board for national and international higher education institutions and she is an editor and reviewer for several peer-reviewed scientific journals in Nutrition.

Dr Thomas McDonnell (Inflammation)   

Dr Thomas McDonnell   Profile photo

Non Clinical Senior Research Fellow to Associate Professor
Dr Thomas McDonnell graduated from the University of Hertfordshire in 2010 studying Applied Biomedical Sciences with a 1st Class Honours degree before pursuing a PhD in Rheumatology and Drug Discovery at UCL in 2011. Since then Dr McDonnell has successfully gained 2 Fellowships: firstly from the Medical Research Foundation, then a prestigious Senior Fellowship from Versus Arthritis.  He was also recently awarded a commendation prize as a Future Leader of Lupus Research (MRF) and the Garrod Prize in Rheumatology (BSR).

Dr McDonnell's research interests vary having spent time studying in Virology, Free Foetal Genetics, Biophysics, Immunology and Pregnancy. His main research focusses around applying inter-disciplinary approaches to cases of extreme clinical need, leveraging experience from other fields to develop innovative solutions to clinical facing problems. To this end Dr McDonnell is an inventor on a patent for a new therapeutic in Antiphospholipid Syndrome, and works across a wide range of disorders in multiple fields including coagulative, autoimmune and obstetric disorders. 

Dr Neal Navani  (Division of Medicine) 

Neal Navani

Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer  to  Professor of Respiratory Medicine

Neal Navani qualified in medicine from Cambridge and UCL in 2000 with distinction and several university prizes. He trained in respiratory medicine at the Brompton and Hammersmith Hospitals before winning a Medical Research Council fellowship in 2008 and completing his PhD at UCL in 2011. He has also completed an MSc in clinical trials and biostatistics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Dr Navani is lead clinician for the lung cancer services at UCLH, senior clinical lead of the UK National Lung Cancer Audit and is the respiratory representative on the current NICE lung cancer guideline and quality standards. He has also chaired the lung cancer board for the North Central and East London Cancer Alliance and is currently the Clinical Director for the Centre for Cancer Outcomes.

In August 2019, Dr Navani won a prestigious MRC / NIHR fellowship to research novel predictors of cancer in lung nodules which allowed him to divide his time between research and clinical activities. He is the author of over 150 articles, has generated over £8m in grant funding with £2.5m as chief investigator and supervised 9 doctoral students. Dr Navani’s main research aims are to measure and improve healthcare and outcomes for patients with lung cancer using clinical trials, epidemiology and data science techniques.

Dr Jack Wells (Department of Imaging)   

Jack Wells profile image

Non Clinical Principal Research Fellow  to  Professor of Neuroimaging

My research career has focused on the development of translational imaging techniques for non-invasive assessment of brain function using MRI.  In 2010, I completed my PhD in the development of novel arterial spin labelling MRI methods to image brain perfusion, supervised by Dr David Thomas and Prof Roger Ordidge.

I then moved to the UCL Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging (CABI) as a post-doc, applying  combined fMRI and optogenetics to investigate the mechanisms underlying neurovascular coupling.  In 2014, I worked at the National Institute of Radiological Sciences in Chiba, Japan, developing methods to image microvascular flow patterns in the brain as well as using fMRI to investigate the neural correlates of chronic pain.  In 2016 I was responsible for the day-to-day running the new MSc in Advanced Biomedical Imaging at CABI.  In 2017, I began a Wellcome Trust/Royal Society Sir Henry Dale Fellowship centred on developing new and non-invasive techniques to image CSF-mediated brain clearance pathways, such as the recently proposed glymphatic system.  In 2022 I was awarded a Wellcome Trust Career Development Fellowship centred on using novel MRI methods to understand the role of the blood-CSF-barrier, or choroid plexus, in the development of dementia

Dr Andrew Williams  Education (Division of Medicine)    

Andrew Williams

Associate Professor (Teaching) to Professor (Teaching)

Andrew was awarded a PhD in Immunology from the University of London in 2001. Since then he has gained research experience at Imperial College London, the National Heart and Lung Institute (NHLI), King's College London and at the Centre for Inflammation and Tissue Repair at University College London (UCL). His research focuses on acute lung inflammation and neutrophil biology, publishing many scientific articles in leading, peer reviewed journals, such as JACI, Thorax, Journal of Immunology. He is a dedicated educator at undergraduate and postgraduate levels within the Division of Medicine and UCL Medical School and he is Head of the Centre for Undergraduate Education, Deputy Director for BSc Applied Medical Sciences and Academic Lead for year 3/ iBSc year for the MBSS programme. His education research focuses on improving assessment and feedback practices in higher education and incorporating generative artificial intelligence (AI) into teaching and assessment. Andrew teaches on and leads courses for BSc and MSc programmes in immunology, molecular medicine, human evolution and cell biology.

Promotions 2023-24 | UCL Human Resources - UCL – University College London