Current lab members

Kenneth Baillie MD PhD

Professor of Experimental Medicine

Photo by Laurence Winram

Kenneth Baillie graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a BSc(Hons) in Physiology in 1999 and MBChB in 2002. He completed basic training in medicine in Glasgow, and in anesthesia in Edinburgh. During this time he led a series of high altitude research projects in Bolivia, and founded a high-altitude research charity, Apex. He was appointed as a clinical lecturer on the ECAT (Edinburgh Clinical Academic Track) at the University of Edinburgh in 2008, and completed a Wellcome Trust-funded PhD in statistical genetics in 2012. He was awarded a Wellcome-Beit Prize Intermediate Clinical Fellowship in 2013. He led a global consensus on harmonisation of research studies in outbreaks for the International Severe Acute Respiratory Infection Consortium (ISARIC), and worked with WHO on H1N1 influenza, MERS, and Ebola. After completing clinical training in 2014 he worked as a visiting scientist at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, before returning to the Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh to establish a research program in translational applications of genomics in critical care medicine. He works as a consultant in the intensive care unit at the Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh. During the Covid outbreak in 2020-21, he led the UK-wide GenOMICC and ISARIC4C studies, and contributed to the design and delivery of the RECOVERY trial. He discovered new biological mechanisms underlying critical illness in Covid, and contributed to the discovery of effective drug treatments to reduce mortality.

He leads a research programme in translational genomics - using genetic signals from critically ill patients to identify both the targets for drug therapy, and the groups of patients likely to benefit most from any treatment, and testing those therapeutic ideas in highly-efficient model systems.

ORCID: 0000-0001-5258-793X

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Sara Clohisey BA(Mod) PhD

Core Scientist

Sara joined the Baillie lab in 2014 as a postdoctoral research fellow. Previously, she graduated with first class honours from Trinity College Dublin after which she completed a PhD studying determinants of cytoskeletal function in Drosophila at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology.

Her main interest is how cells of the immune system react to viral infections and how, in turn, the virus interacts with immune cells.

This host-pathogen interaction is integral to understanding why some people become very sick when they are infected with viruses, such as influenza.

Sara has recently completed sampling on a study looking at influenza susceptibility in the Scottish population and is using sensitive techniques, such as Cap Analysis of Gene Expression (CAGE) and Whole Genome Sequencing, to investigate this on a molecular scale.

Evangelos Kanonidis BSc(Hons)

PhD Student

Evangelos completed a BSc in molecular genetics in 2016. He was appointed to the MRC Doctoral Training Scheme in Precision Medicine and began his PhD in 2016. He is jointly supervised by Dr Naz Lone.

Lucile Neyton MSc

PhD Student

Lucile completed an MSc in bioinformatics in 2016. She was appointed to the MRC Doctoral Training Scheme in Precision Medicine and began her PhD in 2016. She is jointly supervised by Mr Damian Mole.

Nick Parkinson

Clinical Lecturer / PhD student

Nick is a veterinary surgeon and diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, with a particular clinical interest in equine internal medicine and critical care. He was appointed to the ECAT (Edinburgh Clinical Academic Track) scheme in 2016 and began a Wellcome Trust-funded PhD in the Baillie lab in 2017, investigating host genetic variants associated with severe disease after infection with influenza A virus. He is jointly supervised by Prof. Adriano Rossi and Prof. Paul Digard.

Bo Wang

PhD Student

Bo got his distinction MSc degree in Artificial Intelligence from The University of Edinburgh in 2018 after completed undergraduate training in software engineering with a first class honours degree in 2017 from University College Dublin. Bo is currently completing his PhD with Edinburgh Global Research Scholarship and College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine PhD Studentship, investigating medical problems using his informatics skills. He mainly focuses on Data-driven cross-validation to identify novel therapeutic targets in a diverse range of human diseases and applying machine learning on medical problems. He is also in the SHIELD project. Bo is supervised by Dr Kenneth Baillie and co-supervised by Dr Michael Urs Gutmann, Prof Jonathan Fitzgerald and Prof David Dockrell.

Andrew Bretherick BSc(Hons) MBChB FRCA

ECAT clinical lecturer

Andrew is currently completing his PhD, co-supervised by Dr Baillie. He is using protein quantitative trait loci (pQTL) and Mendelian randomisation to identify proteins on causal pathways to disease.

Andrew graduated from the University of Edinburgh with first-class honours in molecular biology in 2006, and medicine in 2009. After completing an academic medical foundation programme in 2011, he moved to Queensland, Australia, for one year. He returned to Edinburgh in 2012 to commence training in Anaesthesia, and started his PhD in August 2016.

Lab members who don't have profiles yet

  • Mr Max Fourmann [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2019]
  • Dr Andy Law
  • Mr Adam Brown [Undergraduate student, BMedSci in Anaesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, 2018 + Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2019]
  • Dr Ian MacCormick [Visiting Scientist, 2017-18]

Former lab members

Steve Thorn BSc (Hons) PhD

Research Systems Consultant

    Steve did a 4-month secondment in our lab, taking time away from his post running the University of Edinburgh High Performance Computer cluster. He worked on the <a href="">coexpression post-GWAS analysis</a> code and provided support and tuition to the whole lab in best practices for multithreading, optimisation and coding infrastructure.
    Steve has a PhD in experimental particle physics. For his thesis, he analysed the equivalent of 1 petabyte of data at CERN (The European Organization for Nuclear Research). He then spent six years as a software engineer, working for the European Space Agency on the Rosetta and Mars Express missions. Steve returned to physics as a postdoc at the University of Edinburgh where he helped to build the grid of computers that now analyses data from the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.
    During his time in our lab he developed his interest in biological applications of high-performance computing. He has now moved into a new role in biological science, working as a senior postdoctoral scientist in the Hickey lab at the Roslin Institute.

Andru Tomoiu BSc (Hons) PhD

Postdoctoral Scientist

Andru was the first postdoc in the lab, working on influenza infection in macrophages for 10 months in 2013. His work in the Baillie lab to co-authorship on papers (Nature, Science, Scientific Reports) and another in submission now.

During his time in the lab Andru decided that, after 10 years of work in laboratory science and virology, he wanted to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor. He was accepted into medical school in his native Quebec, and qualified in medicine in 2017. He is on a residency program with a few to becoming a general practitioner.

Postdocs and visitors

  • Dr Lewis Campbell, Consultant Intensivist, Darwin, Australia [Visiting Scientist 2017]
  • Dr Tuanjun Hu, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Lengeling Lab, Roslin Institute [Postdoctoral research fellow, 2014-2017]
  • Dr Martin MacInnis, Principal Investigator, London, Ontario [Visiting Scientist 2012]
  • Sqdn Ldr David Hall, Consultant in Anaesthesia and Critical Care Medicine, Royal Infirmary Edinburgh [Clinical Research Fellow, 2011]


  • Mr Gordon Paterson [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2017]
  • Ms Emma Chang, Medical Student, University of Edinburgh [Undergraduate student, BMedSci in Anaesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine, 2017]
  • Ms Jocelyn Schreyer [Undergraduate Student, BSc(Hons) in Molecular Genetics, 2017]
  • Ms Jennifer Lawson [Undergraduate Student, BSc(Hons) in Molecular Genetics, 2016]
  • Ms Shona Main [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2013]
  • Mr Alexander Jackson [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2013]
  • Mr Nicholas Moore [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2012]
  • Mr Andrew Beck [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2011]
  • Mr Stuart Gallacher [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2011]
  • Ms Katie Smith [Undergraduate student, MBChB, 2010