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The William Harvey Research Institute - Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

Professor Gareth Ackland


Clinical Professor of Perioperative Medicine

Centre: Translational Medicine and Therapeutics

Twitter: @AcklandLab


ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0565-5164

Gareth graduated from St John’s College, Oxford University Medical School having completed an intercalated PhD supported by a Wellcome Trust Prize Studentship. He completed clinical training in general medicine, anesthesiology and critical care mostly on the UCL-linked clinical rotation, having also spent 18 months as a consultant in anaesthesia at Stanford University Medical Center, California, USA. Having completed an Academy of Medical Sciences/Health Foundation clinician scientist intermediate research training fellowship award at University College London in 2014, Gareth was appointed Senior Lecturer in Perioperative Medicine at Queen Mary University of London in 2015 and Clinical Professor of Perioperative Medicine in 2020, primarily based at the William Harvey Research Institute.

Current clinical duties are based in perioperative medicine at the Royal London Hospital providing anaesthesia for patients undergoing major elective surgery and emergency procedures following major trauma. He is an active member of several national and international societies for anaesthesia and intensive care medicine. He teaches both undergraduate and postgraduate students. The focus of Gareth’s research centres on improving outcomes for patients following major surgery and critical illness through developing translational models, specifically focussing on autonomic regulation of tissue injury. In addition, he contributes to many large multi-centre studies including VISION-UK and METS. Gareth was awarded the British Oxygen Company Chair in anaesthesia in 2016, to support further translational laboratory studies focussed on the role of autonomic dysfunction fuelling perioperative organ injury.


Group members
Ana Gutierrez del Arroyo, Jenifer Sanchez and Shamir Karmali


Neurobiology of autonomic control as applied to inflammation, perioperative organ injury and critical illness. 

Key Publications

Full list of publications

  1. Molecular mechanisms linking dysautonomia and impaired cardiac contractility in critical illness. Critical Care Medicine, 2016: in press.
  2. Randomized controlled trial of vagal modulation by sham feeding in elective non-gastrointestinal (orthopaedic) surgery. Br J Anaesth. 2015;115(5):727-35
  3. Metabolic dysfunction in lymphocytes promotes postoperative morbidity. Clin Sci (Lond). 2015;129(5):423-37
  4. Individualised oxygen delivery targeted haemodynamic therapy in high-risk surgical patients: a multicentre, randomised, double-blind, controlled, mechanistic trial. Lancet Respir Med. 2015 ;3(1):33-41. 
  5. Myocardial injury after noncardiac surgery: a large, international, prospective cohort study establishing diagnostic criteria, characteristics, predictors, and 30-day outcomes. VISION Investigators. Anesthesiology. 2014;120(3):564-78
  6. Peripheral neural detection of danger-associated and pathogen-associated molecular patterns. Crit Care Med. 2013;41(6):e85-92
  7. Cardioprotection evoked by remote ischaemic preconditioning is critically dependent on the activity of vagal pre-ganglionic neurones. Cardiovasc Res. 2012;95(4):487-94
  8. Perioperative fluid therapy. Pearse RM, Ackland GL. BMJ. 2012 344:e2865. doi: 10.1136/bmj.e2865.


  • British Oxygen Company Chair in Anaesthesia (2016-2020)
  • British Journal of Anaesthesia/ Royal College of Anaesthetists Basic Science fellowship (2014-2019)
  • British Heart Foundation Programme grant (co-PI; 2015-2020)
  • Obstetric Anaesthetists Association (2014-2016)
  • Academy of Medical Sciences/Health Foundation Clinician Scientist award (2009-2014) and National Institute for Health Research, UK


Prof. Rupert Pearse; Dr. Michael O’Dwyer; Dr. John Prowle; Dr. Sian Henson, Prof. Andy Tinker

Prof. Alexander Gourine (UCL); Prof. Andrey Abramov (UCL); Prof Andrew Tobin (Univ. Cambridge); Prof. Pierre Lambiase (UCL)

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