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Critical Care and Peri-operative Medicine Research Group

Research Staff

Priyanthi Dias

Clinical Trial and Research Manager

Priya graduated in 2003 from Cardiff University with a degree in Biochemistry. She has worked in a research environment for the last ten years, during which time she completed her PhD in Cardiac Medicine. Having joined the Group in October 2016 as Senior Trials Coordinator, Priya is now able to pursue her passion of working in a more patient-focused research setting.

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Adam Hewitt Smith

Anaesthetist and Honorary Lecturer at Busitema University

Adam Hewitt Smith

Adam is a UK trained anaesthetist who has been working in eastern Uganda for the last six years. He is an honorary lecturer at Busitema University and together with his Ugandan colleagues has established the country’s first BSc training programme in Anaesthesia for non-physician anaesthetists. He is a PhD student at QMUL and lead investigator for the SMARTER trial.

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Ana Gutierrez del Arroyo

Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Ana obtained her PhD in 2000 in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at University Autonoma, Madrid. This explored the mechanism of lymphocyte apoptosis and chemotherapy. Postdoctoral work includes cellular senescence and cell cycle regulation at London Cancer Research Institute; mechanisms of Myeloproliferative disorders and Sepsis-Induced Immunoparesis at UCL, and organ dysfunction in perioperative Medicine.

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Ann Thomson

PCTU Senior Trials Manager

Ann has an MSc in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Westminster. Her research interests include pragmatic interventions in the NHS; the practical day-to-day management of research; methodological research; nutrition, obesity, quality improvement and primary care. She has over 6 years’ experience in managing trials and currently manages two trials with Professor Pearse: EPOCH and OPTIMISE II.

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Alex Fowler

Junior Doctor and NIHR Doctoral Research Fellow

Alex is studying the epidemiology of high risk surgical patients in the NHS. He started working with the group while a medical student, graduated from Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry in 2015, and worked as a clinical research fellow in the critical care unit prior to starting his PhD. 

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Fred Bulamba

Senior Lecturer at Busitema University

Fred Bulamba

Dr Bulamba is a Senior Lecturer at Busitema University in Eastern Uganda. His research interest is perioperative medicine. Fred's current project, the 3D PPH study, is focused on postpartum hemorrhage, a condition that is still killing many women globally.

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Luke Flower

Clinical Research Fellow

Luke completed his undergraduate medical training at the University of Bristol in 2016. He is currently a trainee in anaesthesia within the London deanery. His research interests include critical care associated muscle wasting, lung injury and cardiogenic shock.

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Nicola Justine Vickery

Clinical Research Fellow

Nicola is a South African trained specialist anaesthetist who has been involved in NGO projects and has worked under Prof Biccard at the University of Cape Town. She joined the Group in 2020 and splits her time as a consultant in anaesthesia and critical care with ongoing work as a clinical research fellow within the Group. Her interests lie in pragmatic clinical trials and global surgery in low- and middle income countries.



Salma Begum

Trial Coordinator

Salma graduated from The Open University in 2016 with a degree in Biological Sciences. She helps coordinate the SPACE trial and collects data and follow ups for the other research trials run by the Group.  

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Tom Davies

NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow 

Tom graduated from Nottingham University in 2013. He is currently a speciality registrar in anaesthesia within the London deanery. He is interested in nutrition, metabolism and rehabilitation following critical illness and major surgery with a particular focus on improving functional outcomes for patients.




Giada Azzopardi

NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow

Giada Azzopardi, NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow

Giada graduated in 2015 from Imperial College London School of Medicine. She is a dual renal and intensive care medicine trainee within the London deanery. She has keen interest in the relationship between muscle wasting, kidney disease and long-term outcomes following critical care.



Brigitta Fazzini

NIHR Doctoral Clinical Academic Fellow and Advanced Critical Care Practitioner

Brigitta Fazzini

Brigitta originally graduated from Italy in 2013 with a BS(Hons) in Adult Nursing. She obtained MSc in Critical Care MSc at QMUL and the Advanced Clinical Practice from King’s College. She works clinically as Advanced Critical Care Practitioner on the Adult Critical Care Unit at the Royal London Hospital, and is a researcher in respiratory and critical care medicine. Brigitta holds a NIHR Doctoral Clinical Academic Fellowship and she is currently investigating 'how to improve outcomes for acute respiratory patients on non-invasive respiratory support treatments'. In her project, she uses mixed-methods research including 'bedside physiology' and 'applied translational and qualitative research'. Brigitta has been awarded Fellowship of Higher Education Academy in 2021, and supports the running of the Critical Care MSc. Her research interests include acute respiratory failure, clinical respiratory monitoring and diagnostic tools, respiratory muscle function and non-invasive ventilation.

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Eileen Kelly

NIHR Pre-Doctoral Clinical Academic Fellow

Eileen Kelly, NIHR Pre-Doctoral Clinical Academic Fellow

Highly Specialised Speech and Language Therapist, Adult Intensive Care Unit.

Eileen has been a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) at the Royal London Hospital since 2019. She graduated in 2014 and has worked in a range of adult acute services in Ireland, Australia and UAE. Having completed her MSc. from the Department of Clinical Speech and Language Studies, Trinity College Dublin in 2019. Eileen has continued to pursue a clinical academic career. She is currently undertaking a pre-doctoral fellowship funded by the NIHR, exploring the application of ultrasound for the evaluation of swallowing and voice in ICU patients. 

Her research interests are laryngeal injury in ICU, fibreoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing and clinical applications of ultrasound to evaluate swallowing and voice. 

Mareena Joseph

Research Nurse

Mareena Joseph - Research Nurse

I did my nursing studies in south India and came to UK with such rich experience. I worked as a ward nurse in general surgery and gender reassignment, Scrub nurse and then as a critical care nurse. I was always fascinated the way questions were answered to most critical patient care decisions and improving care and patient outcome. This was my driving force behind joining research team.



Onika Ottley

Research Nurse

Onika Ottley

I have a background of 14 years in Critical Care Nursing and Emergency Nursing, having worked in Trinidad and Tobago for 3 years, then moved to the United Kingdom to gain more experience. In the UK I worked at Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital and at The Royal London Hospital where I progressed to the role of Intensive Care Sister. I have gradually developed an interest in how research was being conducted to improve patient outcomes and the delivery of care. I have now decided to join the CCPMG team and have commenced working with us in February 2022.

Saira Nazeer

Research Therapist

Saira Nazeer

Having completed her training in Physiotherapy at the University of East London, Saira specialised in respiratory physiotherapy, in particular critical care. Saira’s passion in this area grew, leading to her completing two masters modules at University College London. Alongside developing clinically, she was keen to also develop herself professionally working in Education and Workforce Development, gaining a greater understanding of the wider NHS and collaborating on the development of a North East London competency based critical care training programme. 

Throughout her career, Saira has been involved in many service improvement projects and is keen to become more involved in research so as to continue to have an impact on service delivery and patient experience. 


Henrike Janssen

Senior Clinical Research Fellow

Henrike completed medical school and training for anaesthesia in Hannover and Heidelberg, Germany. She then worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York City, USA. Her research focuses on translational studies into metabolic reprogramming of leukocytes, perioperative inflammation, and organ injury.

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Isabell Nessel

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Isabell has a background in Nutrition and Biomedical Sciences and was awarded a PhD in preterm infant nutrition from Bournemouth University in 2020. She has since worked at QMUL, focusing on the role of nutrients, including long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, in brain injuries across the life span. She joined the group in 2023 as a postdoctoral researcher for the HIPPO trial, investigating the role of omega-3 fatty acids in critically ill patients.

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Charles Fadipe

Clinical Research Fellow

Charles completed his undergraduate medical training at Barts and The London in 2020. Shortly after that, he worked in the Adult Critical Care Unit for 3 months before completing his foundation programme in Thames Valley deanery. He joined the Group after his foundation years as a clinical research fellow and is working as a project coordinator with the APPRISE group which focuses on global perioperative care research in low and middle income countries. He is also contributing towards  the OSIRIS trial.



Jai Vairale

Research Coordinator

Jai Vairale

With a medical background and inclination towards research, Jai has worked and evolved as a researcher through 15 years of experience in India. After pursuing Master in Public Health from the Imperial College London, she is now proud to be a part of the CCPMG team and the research offices, that are extremely rich and busy with ambitious research projects.  She's keen on ‘research governance’ and ‘participatory research methods’. Jai enjoys team work and strongly believes that engaging sites, patients and stakeholders can make any project a success!


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