National Prion Clinic


Clinic staff

Between them, the National Prion Clinic staff have many decades of experience in Prion Diseases, making this a world renowned centre of excellence and expertise. The staff are listed below, with a short biographical statement by way of introduction.

Clinical Fellows

Dr Tom Coysh
Tom studied medicine at Cambridge University, with an intercalated degree in Physiology, Development & Neuroscience and since then has undertaken most of his training in London. He has trained in neurology at the National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery, St Mary’s Hospital and Charing Cross Hospital and joined the National Prion Clinic in October 2020.

Clinical Research Fellow


Leah studied medicine at Cambridge University and Imperial College London, with an intercalated degree in neuroscience. Since then she has completed foundation training in the Thames Valley Deanery, and joined the National Prion Clinic in October 2021. 

Lead Nurse

Rachel Williams
Rachel Williams
Rachel began her career working in critical care at Kings, developing an interest in neurosciences early on. She went on to complete a master’s degree in Neuroscience whilst working as a research nurse in neurotrauma and emergencies, at St Mary’s Hospital. She then became a clinical nurse specialist in hydrocephalus at the national hospital for neurology and neurosurgery before being awarded a clinical fellowship at the centre for medicines optimisation, research and education. Rachel joined the National Prion Clinic as lead nurse in May 2022.


Clinical Research Nurse / Prion Disease Clinical Nurse Specialists


Kirsty McNiven

Kirsty joined the National Prion Clinic in June 2014 as a Clinical Research Nurse / Clinical Nurse Specialist.  She completed her nursing training at the Robert Gordon University; Aberdeen in 2010 then went on to work in Neurosciences at King’s College Hospital for three years.  Kirsty was the lead author on a paper on artificial feeding in patients in the advanced stages of Prion Disease, published in Brain Communications in 2019.  As a Clinical Research Nurse, she has been contributing to Covid-19 studies e.g. the Oxford Vaccine Trial, and wishes to go on to develop her career in research.

Veronica O'Donnell

Veronica completed her training at the University of Newcastle with a BSc in Health Education. She has worked mainly in renal, renal oncology, palliative care and neurology.  Veronica joined the National Prion clinic in May 2010 as a Clinical Nurse Specialist, where she is currently undertaking courses in Mentorship and genetic counselling.

Research Activity Co-ordinator and Cohort Secretary

Rowena Baker

Prior to joining the NPC team in December 2023, Rowena most recently worked as a science teacher for over 15 years teaching in both primary and secodary schools. Her role involves managing the clinical database and administration duties for the clinical team.

Clinical Lecturer

Dr Gargi Banerjee

Gargi studied medicine at Cambridge and Oxford Universities, and has a PhD in Clinical Neurology which she completed at UCL. She is training in neurology at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. She joined the National Prion Clinic in 2019, and has been an NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Neurology since 2021.

Consultant Clinical Lead, Professor of Neurology 

Simon Mead
After medical training at Cambridge and Oxford Universities and a PhD in the genetics of prion diseases at Imperial College London, Simon Mead is now a consultant neurologist and Clinical Lead of the UK National Prion Clinic based at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. Also working at the UK Medical Research Council’s Prion Unit, his research interests include clinical trial studies enrolling CJD or prion disease patients, the discovery of genetic factors that cause or influence prion disease and the development of treatments for prion disease based on antibodies.

Consultant Neurologist

Dr Tze How Mok
Mok completed undergraduate medicine at University College Dublin and Penang Medical College in 2006. He trained in clinical neurology in Cork, Dublin and the Royal Free London, prior to taking up his current position as a clinical research fellow in August 2014.

Consultant Neurologist

Dr Peter Rudge
Peter Rudge read medicine initially at the Royal Veterinary College, London and then at St Bartholomew's Medical College. After completing his general medical training at Bart's and The Royal Post Graduate Medical School, Hammersmith he trained in neuroloy at the National Hospital, Queen Square and was appointed to the staff in 1974, jointly with Northwick Park Hospital. He has also held honorary appointments at the Royal Marsden, St Mary's and St Thomas' Hospitals in London and Kingston Public Hospital in Jamaica. For the past 3 years he has held an appointment in the National Prion Clinic as a clinical neurologist helping to review referrals to that clinic and recruitment to the National Cohort.

He has published over 180 peer reviewed papers principally on neuro-otology, multiple sclerosis and most recently prion diseases.

Director of Prion Unit, Professor of Neurology 

John Collinge
Prof. John Collinge

Professor Collinge graduated in Medicine in 1984 from Bristol University and trained in clinical neurology at St. Mary's Hospital and the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London. He is Professor of Neurology and Director of the Medical Research Council (MRC) Prion Unit and Institute of Prion Diseases at University College London (UCL) and Director of the UK National Prion Clinic at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. His research is working towards a fundamental understanding of how prions cause disease and the development of effective treatments. He is a founder fellow of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2005 and appointed an inaugural Senior Fellow of the Faculty of the National Institute for Health Research in 2008. He is also a visiting Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School. He was awarded a CBE by HM the Queen in 2004 for services to medical research.


Dr Edgar Chan
Edgar Chan is a Consultant Clinical Neuropsychologist. He completed his undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Melbourne and his post-graduate professional training in Clinical Psychology and Clinical Neuropsychology at the University of Queensland.  He obtained a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience at the Queensland Brain Institute and has been working in the Department of Neuropsychology at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery Queen Square since 2013. He is also an Honorary Senior Research Associate with the Stroke Research Group at the Institute of Neurology, UCL. 

Patient administration

Regina Appenteng
Regina joined the NPC as the patient pathway co-ordinator/administrator in November 2016, having spent 10 years working for the Whittington Hospital. Her role involves coordinating data from General Practitioners and Healthcare professionals for the clinicians in the NPC.