Council

Our Trustees are legally responsible for the overall governance, management and policy, ensuring that the charitable objectives for which it has been set up are met. The Trustees are also the Directors of The Society. Council meets around four times a year. Elections to the Council take place each year, and any Member is eligible to stand. Council members are elected to serve for a period of four years. The current size of the Council is 17. Meetings of the Council are chaired by the President. 

Logged-in Members can access details of those sitting on Society committees and, via the Member Portal, a directory of staff members. See also Past Officers of The Physiological Society.

Bridget Lumb, President

University of Bristol

Bridget Lumb graduated with a BSc (1978) and PhD (1982) from the University of Birmingham. Bridget’s research focuses on CNS mechanisms of pain and fear. She presented her first communication to The Society in 1983 and has been a Member of The Society since 1990. Bridget’s experience of Higher Education started as a technician in the Physiology Department at Nottingham University in the 1970s and latterly at Bristol where she has worked in the Department of Physiology (now Physiology, Pharmacology and Neuroscience) for the last 30 years. Bridget’s experience spans a broad academic arena such as membership of editorial boards (including Deputy Chair of Experimental Physiology), grant awarding bodies, and Council membership of The Physiological Society. As its scientific Meetings Secretary, she became the first female executive committee member of the Society in 126 years. She has also been a Member, and chaired several of The Society’s committees, including its Education Committee and the Animal Legislation and Welfare Committee.

David Paterson, President-Elect

University of Oxford

David J. Paterson is Professor of Physiology and Head of the Department of Physiology, Anatomy & Genetics at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Merton College, Oxford. He graduated from the Universities of Otago (NZ), Western Australia and Oxford, gaining his D.Phil from Oxford and D.Sc from the University of Western Australia. He is a group leader in the British Heart Foundation Centre of Research Excellence at Oxford, and is Honorary Director of the Burdon Sanderson Cardiac Science Centre in his Department. As a cardiac neurobiologist, his research focuses on the neural control of the cardiovascular system in normal and diseased states. In 2014 he was made an Honorary Fellow of The Royal Society of New Zealand, and in 2018 was awarded the Carl Ludwig Distinguished Lectureship from the American Physiological Society. He was recently Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Physiology, and is a Fellow of The Physiological Society, Royal Society of Medicine, and Royal Society of Biology. His new text book with Neil Herring, Levick, An Introduction to Cardiovascular Physiology was published in April.

Frank Sengpiel, Honorary Treasurer

Cardiff University

Frank Sengpiel is Professor of Neuroscience at Cardiff University. Previously, he worked in the Laboratory of Physiology at the University of Oxford (where he obtained his DPhil) and at the Max-Planck Institute of Neurobiology near Munich. He is a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales and the Royal Society of Biology. His research focuses on plasticity of the visual system and disorders of binocular vision, particularly amblyopia. He became a Member of The Physiological Society in 2001. He has served as convenor of the Neural Development & Plasticity special interest group and as Theme Lead for Cellular & Integrative Physiology. He was elected to Council in 2017.

Sue Deuchars, Chair, Meetings Committee

University of Leeds

Sue Deuchars is a Reader in Neuroscience at the University of Leeds, recently returning to full-time work after working part-time for 16 years while her children were growing up. Sue previously worked at the Royal Free Hospital, London, as a postdoctoral fellow after being awarded her PhD in 1993. Her research focuses on spinal circuitry involved in autonomic control and how stem cell proliferation and differentiation may be modulated within the spinal cord. She clearly remembers her first oral communication to The Physiological Society as a nervous PhD student, when voting still took place to accept or reject an abstract. Sue has enjoyed being a member of The Society since 1990 and has served as a convenor of the Cardiac and Respiratory Special Interest Group and a Theme Lead before becoming a Trustee. She takes her role as an Equality and Diversity champion very seriously.

Sarah Hall, Chair, Education & Outreach Committee

Cardiff University

Sarah Hall a Senior Lecturer in Physiology at Cardiff University. Her research career centred around cardiac cell physiology and ion channel regulation. In recent years, she has developed a strong interest in education and spent much of her time designing, developing, and delivering teaching and learning activities for undergraduate students.

Rachel Tribe, Chair, Membership & Grants Committee

King's College London

Rachel Tribe trained as a physiologist at the University of Sheffield and gained her PhD at UMDS, London. Currently, Rachel is a Reader in Women’s Health at King’s College London where she heads up an active and well-funded research team of scientists and clinicians. Her work focuses on translational research aimed at tackling preterm birth and other pregnancy-associated conditions. Her specific research interests include uterine smooth muscle physiology/pharmacology, the innate immune system in pregnancy, and the identification of biomarkers for prediction of preterm birth. Rachel has been a Member of The Physiological Society since 1996. She became a Trustee in 2013 and is Chair of the Membership and Grants Committee and a co-Trustee lead for ‘Equality and Diversity’ within The Society. She is committed to the promotion of physiology through teaching and research, and the active engagement of schoolchildren and the wider public in The Society’s activities.

Deborah Baines, Chair, Publications Committee

St George's Hospital Medical School

Deborah Baines is Professor of Molecular Physiology and Joint Head of the Centre for Immunology and Pathology in the Institute of Infection and Immunity at St George’s, University of London. She is also Course Director for the MRes in Biomedical Science and a member of the Higher Education Academy. Previously, she worked in University of Dundee and University of Bristol. Her main research interest is the regulation of ion and solute transport across the airway epithelium and how hyperglycaemia promotes respiratory infection in patients with chronic lung disease, such as cystic fibrosis or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). She has been a Member of The Physiological Society for 15 years and presents regularly at meetings. She currently serves on Meetings and Membership & Grants committees where she helps promote physiology as a discipline and the support of early career scientists working in the field.

Guy Bewick

University of Aberdeen

Guy Bewick graduated with a BSc in Zoology and Animal Physiology from the University of East Anglia in 1979. He completed a PhD in 1986 investigating the regeneration of nerve-muscle connections in the Department of Physiology, King’s College London with Dr David A Tonge. He was appointed to a Lectureship in Biomedical Sciences, University of Aberdeen, in 1994 and promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2001. His research interests are in synaptic plasticity, neurodegeneration and mechanical sensation. Guy became an Affiliate in 1986 and then Member of The Society in 1996, and has been a Trustee since 2015, serving on both the Membership & Grants and Nominations Committees. He also represented The Society as a judge in STEM for Britain.

Holly Shiels

University of Manchester

Holly is a Senior Lecturer in Animal Physiology at the University of Manchester. Her research focuses on cardiac physiology in ectotherms and the mechanisms which maintain or adjust heart function in a changing environment. Such knowledge has applications to cardiac health and disease and in predicting how organisms, populations, ecosystems and natural resources respond to environmental change and stressors. For further details, look at Holly’s research and publications and find information on the Shiels Lab here.

Federico Formenti

King's College London

Federico Formenti is a Senior Lecturer in Human Physiology at King’s College London. Federico obtained a PhD in biomechanics from Manchester Metropolitan University under the supervision of Professor Minetti, and a DPhil in physiology from the University of Oxford under the supervision of Professors Robbins and Dorrington. Federico worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Oxford, and as a lecturer at the University of Auckland. His research spans from exercise physiology and biomechanics, to human responses to hypoxia, and intensive care. Federico has been a member of The Physiological Society since 2009, when he was elected as Affiliate Representative. He joined Council in 2015, and is a member of the Education and Outreach Committee.

Graham McGeown

Queen's University of Belfast

Graham McGeown is the Dunville Chair of Physiology at Queen’s University of Belfast. He qualified in Physiology and Medicine before completing his research doctorate on lymphatic function. His research now focusses on the control of the microcirculation, especially as it applies to the retina and diabetic retinopathy. This work relies on molecular, electrophysiological and Ca2+ imaging techniques to explore microvascular physiology and pathophysiology using in vitro, ex vivo and in vivo models. He became a Member of The Physiological Society in 1990 and has previously served as its Honorary Treasurer. He believes that physiology, as the study of function and how it is integrated within living things, is crucial to the understanding of both health and disease.

Charlotte Haigh

University of Leeds

Charlotte Haigh is an Associate Professor in Human Physiology at the University of Leeds. Coming from a background of research in molecular endocrinology and renal physiology, Charlotte now focuses on student education and public engagement. Charlotte was appointed as the academic lead for public engagement at Leeds two years ago and spends time promoting the benefits of engagement to researchers, as well as continuing to design innovative ways of engaging students in her teaching practice. She has been a Full Member of The Physiological Society since 2007, being an Affiliate Member prior. Charlotte currently serves on the Education and Outreach Committee where she hopes to help inspire the physiologists of the future.

Elizabeth Sheader

University of Manchester

Elizabeth is a Senior Lecturer with the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health at the University of Manchester and teaches Physiology across the faculty to medical, science and health-related disciplines, as well as holding additional roles in student support and leadership. Elizabeth has been a Full Member of The Society since 2001and is passionate about the importance of research in scientific education and the promotion of science through public engagement to inspire the next generation of physiologists and help shape the future of The Society.

Stefan Trapp

University College London

Stefan is a University Reader with the Department of Neuroscience, Physiology and Pharmacology at UCL and has been an affiliate and subsequently full member of the Physiological Society for over two decades. He has contributed to the activities of Physoc through a number of organized symposia and involvement in a variety of outreach activities and is the UCL Physiological Society representative, running Departmental Seminar Series and raising awareness of schemes such as Summer Project placements and the Rob Clarke Awards. He brings considerable experience as a physiology researcher to support the society in lobbying political decision makers for funding, supporting the research community with meetings, and outreach activities to educate the general public to promote physiology as a pivotal research activity.

Raheela Khan, Elected Trustee

University of Nottingham

Raheela Khan is Professor of Cellular Physiology at the University of Nottingham. She has been a member of The Physiological Society for over 20 years and served on the Membership and Grants Committee until recently. Stimulated by her PhD research on the electrophysiology of the insect neuromuscular junction, her research interests encompass the regulation of ion channels with particular emphasis on pregnancy and cancer. Her academic role includes undergraduate teaching of reproductive physiology. Currently, she is Athena-SWAN lead for the School of Medicine in Nottingham.

Matt Taylor, External Trustee

Generation Investment Management

Matt Taylor is a Director with Generation Investment Management, where he leads the support provided to companies post investment in the Growth Equity fund. This engagement encompasses strategy development, talent sourcing and people processes, governance, and commercial connections. The Generation Growth Equity fund backs companies around the world that are helping accelerate the transition to a sustainable, low carbon economy, including the likes of Proterra, M-KOPA, Nest and Ocado.
Prior to working with Generation, Matt was a Partner with Bain & Co. in London, and a member of the Strategy and Organisation practises. Whilst at Bain, Matt led projects across Europe, US, Asia and Australia with clients in the Industrial sector. Internally within Bain, Matt was deeply involved with talent and professional development, and played a number of leadership roles associated with this.
Matt has a BA in Human Sciences, first class, and an M Sc. in Medical Anthropology, both from Oxford University. He is passionate about improving access to the medical sciences, and is excited to be able to play a role in helping the Physiological Society to grow and thrive.

In attendance only

Rachel McCormick, Affiliate Member

University of Liverpool

Rachel McCormick is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Liverpool. Her research focuses on skeletal muscle ageing, with a particular focus on the dysregulation of miRNAs in the ageing process. She became a Member of The Physiological Society in 2013 and was voted to be Affiliate Representative in 2015. She also serves on the Educational and Outreach Committee and is a member of the Physiology News editorial board.