Great Ormond Street Hospital Laboratory Medicine provides a
service which is led and supported by a range of clinical and
technical experts. Please scroll down to find out about our
clinical and technical leads or click on one of the links below to
navigate directly to a department of interest.
Microbiology, Virology and Infection
Paediatric Malignancy Unit
Head of Clinical Service
Simon obtained his PhD from Aston University in 1987 and was
made a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists in 2003. As well
as being Head of Service, he holds the UCL Chair of Clinical
Chemistry and has a strong interest in the diagnosis and monitoring
of patients with inherited metabolic disorders. This work is
underpinned by a number of basic and translational research
projects that are carried out in conjunction with the UCL Institute
of Child Health.
He has published over 150 papers in the area of mitochondrial,
neurotransmitter and lysosomal disorders. Simon is also the
Clinical Lead for the Neurometabolic Unit at the National Hospital,
Queen Square (UCLH Foundation Trust).
Lead Laboratory Manager
Christine is the Senior Laboratory Manager with operational
responsibility for Blood Sciences, Blood Transfusion, Immunology,
Cell Therapy and the Haematology Cellular and Molecular Diagnostic
Christine also serves as the Lead in Quality and Training for
Laboratory Medicine. She has many years experience working in NHS
pathology laboratories, commencing her career at the Regional Blood
Transfusion Centre in Newcastle Upon Tyne then notably spening 25
years at the Royal London Hospital where she managed the automated
Haematology Laboratory with additional responsibilities and special
interest in Training and Point of Care Testing.
Christine joined GOSH in 2007 as the Haematology Laboratory
Manager. Christine holds a MSc in Haematology and is a Fellow and
Chartered Scientist of the Institute of Biomedical Science.
Clinical and Technical
Helen Aitkenhead is a graduate of Aston University, Birmingham
and University of Surrey, Guildford. Helen undertook her clinical
scientist training at Charing Cross, St Mary's and Northwick Park
Hospitals. Before coming to Great Ormond Street Hospital for
Children, Helen worked as a Senior Clinical Scientist at Ealing
Hospital. Helen has interests in all aspects of paediatric clinical
biochemistry as well as point of care testing, quality management
and clinical scientist training.
Helen was appointed at GOSH in 2004 where she was Clinical Lead
for the Special Routine and Automated Biochemistry. She was
appointed as Head of Chemical Pathology and Director of Newborn
Bloodspot Screening in 2015.
Interim director North East Thames Genetics
Head of Service (Molecular Genetics)
Lucy is the Interim Director of the Regional Genetics
Laboratories and Head of Service for Molecular
Genetics. The Molecular Genetics Laboratory, along
with Cytogenetics, forms the North East Thames Regional Genetics
Laboratories. After graduating in Molecular Biology from Liverpool
University Lucy undertook clinical scientist training and
registration in the Yorkshire Regional DNA Laboratory, Leeds.
After 8 years she moved to Great Ormond Street Hospital to take up
the post of Deputy Head in Molecular Genetics, obtaining Fellowship
of the Royal College of Pathologists in 2006. Lucy became Head
of Service for Regional Molecular Genetics in 2009 and Interim
Director of the Genetics Laboratory in 2014. Key interests
include the genetics of hearing loss, surfactant protein
deficiencies and non-invasive prenatal testing.
Head of Service (Cytogenetics)
Dr Jonathan Waters is Head of Cytogenetics/Deputy Director
within the Regional Genetics Service Laboratories and has an
honorary Lectureship in Clinical and Molecular Genetics at ICH/UCL.
Jonathan has degrees from Nottingham, where he also worked at the
City Hospital and Glasgow. He has worked as a clinical scientist in
Manchester, Cambridge and Birmingham together with several short
stints in Switzerland. He was a Visiting Scientist at the MRC LMB
(Laboratory for Molecular Biology) during his time in Cambridge and
was NEQAS (EQA) Organiser in Clinical Cytogenetics while in
Birmingham. He moved to Great Ormond St Hospital for Children in
2001. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Pathologists and
currently chairs the SAC (Specialist Advisory Committee) on
Genetics and Clinical Embryology. He has published around 35
papers and book chapters and maintains an interest in placental
biology/prenatal diagnosis and the genetics of neurocognitive
disorders. His principal focus is on managing and developing a
modern cytogenetics (chromosome copy number) service with the
emphasis on the introduction into diagnostic service of new
Dr Ri Liesner
Michael Ashworth is the Clinical Lead for Histopathology.
He completed his medical education at University College Dublin
in 1980 and gained MRCPath in Liverpool in 1989. Michael
took up his first consultant post in 1993 at Bristol Childrens
Hospital before taking up the position of Consultant Paediatric
Pathologist at Alder Hey Childrens Hospital in 2001. He
joined GOSH in 2005.
Michael was Secretary of the British Paediatric Pathology
Association between 2004 and 2009 and Secretary UK Cardiac
Pathology Network 2010. He was a Council Member of the
Paediatric Pathology Society between 1999 and 2003 and Chair
of the Standing Advisory Committee on Paediatric and Perinatal
Pathology of the Royal College of Pathologists, UK from 2007
to 2011. He is also an examiner in paediatric pathology for the
Royal College of Pathologists.
Michael's main areas of interest include heart
disease in children, pulmonary disease and paediatric
gastrointestinal disease producing publications in all these
areas. Michael also holds a diploma in the History of
Medicine of the Society of Apothecaries.
Dr Tom Jacques
Dr Tom Jacques runs a research group at the UCL Institute of
Child Health focussing on brain tumours and paediatric epilepsy and
provides the diagnostic neuropathology service for GOSH. He has
held a Clinician Scientist Award for the past 6 years and have
recently been awarded a nationally competitive HEFCE Clinical
Senior Lectureship. Tom's research focuses on the role of stem
cells in the development of paediatric brain disease. Specifically,
he have recently shown that the major types of brain tumour can
arise from stem cells and that the type of tumour is determined by
the initiating genetic mutation (Jacqueset al.EMBO J
2010;29:222-35). Tom has also isolated a pathological stem cell
from a malformation of cortical development in children with severe
epilepsy (Yasinet al.Acta Neuropathologica 2010;120:85-96).
Professor Neil Sebire is Professor of Paediatric and
Developmental Pathology at ICH/UCL and Consultant Paediatric
Pathologist at GOSH. Having initially trained in Obstetrics and
Fetal Medicine, he trained in diagnostic pathology and now has
research interests in placental pathology, paediatric tumour
diagnosis and investigation of infant deaths.
Liina Palm completed her medical education at Tartu
University, Estonia, in 1992 with a medical degree equivalent to MB
BS (Hons) and undertook her training in general Histopathology at
Tartu University Clinics and North-Estonian Regional Hospital,
Tallinn, between 1992 and 1996. Liina gained her paediatric and
perinatal training through apprenticeships at several hospitals in
different countries, including Germany, Sweden and the Unites
States. She was a pioneer in paediatric pathology in Estonia, by
promoting it as a separate subspecialty of pathology and by setting
up a network of paediatric and perinatal pathology at the main
teaching hospitals of the country.
In 2004 Liina moved to the UK where she took up a post of a full
time Consultant Paediatric and Perinatal Pathologist at Barts and
The London NHS Trust and worked there until 2011. In January 2012
she took up the position of Consultant Paediatric Pathologist at
Great Ormond Street Hospital. In 2010 she gained FRCPath by
nomination. She is a member of BRIPPA and a member of the committee
of the Pediatric Pathology Society.
Liina has a wide experience in perinatal and paediatric autopsy
pathology, including specialist autopsy work for HM Coroners and
for the Metropolitan Police. She is the Clinical Lead for the
Mortuary Service at GOSH. Her main area of interest is sudden
unexpected infant death (SUDI) and related issues.
Clinical Electron Microscopist
Glenn Anderson provides an ultrastructural diagnostic service
to GOSH and other institutions in the UK and abroad.
Electron microscopy is of value in the diagnosis of renal,
neuromuscular and lysosomal storage disorders as well as other rare
paediatric diseases. Glenn also has a particular interest in
metabolic disorders including the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses
and leads one of the few units in Europe to provide a prenatal
diagnostic service for these conditions.
Glenn actively collaborates with clinical and scientific
colleagues in research projects on a variety of topics, where
ultrastructural morphology may aid understanding of disease
processes and etiology.
Kimberly Gilmour received her BSc from Duke University (USA) and
her PhD from the State University of New York at Stony Brook (USA).
She then completed a research fellowship studying T cell
development at Cancer Research UK. She was appointed in 1999 to
translate her PhD thesis research (STAT signaling) into clinical
diagnostics. Since then she has developed and introduced a number
of robust tests for diagnosing primary immune deficiency (PID). She
has collaborated with the Molecular genetics service to introduce
high throughput sequencing to diagnosing PID. She is also involved
with a number of gene and cell therapy trials. She holds several
research grants focused on developing and introducing novel
diagnostics and monitoring for PID. Kimberly has published
over 60 papers and received her FRCPath by publications in
2012. In her current role, she is Consultant Clinical
Scientist and Clinical Lead for the Immunology laboratory
(which in conjunction with NE Thames regional genetics provides a
nationally funded and recognized service for primary immune
deficiency) and Director of Cellular Therapy.
Microbiology, Virology and Infection
Dr Garth Dixon
Garth Dixon is expert Paediatric Microbiologist and currently
Lead Clinician for the Department of Microbiology, Virology
and Infection Prevention and Control. He has been a
consultant at GOHS for five years.
Garth Dixon trained in paediatrics for six years and worked
as a general paediatric registrar until undergoing training in
Microbiology at the Royal Free Hospital then GOSH. He
obtained MRCPath in 2006 and took up a consultant post that year.
Garth Dixon was awarded his PhD in 2000 at ICH
Garth has a special interest in using the latest molecular
techniques, including whole genome sequencing, to better define how
certain bacteria are able to cause more severe disease than others.
Garth maintains a research interests in pathogenesis of
Meningococcal disease, specifically, designing novel vaccines to
help prevent the disease and also investigating how the bacterium
induces damage to the blood vessel walls in severe forms of the
Dr John Hartley
Dr James Soothill
James Soothill has been a consultant
Microbiologist at GOSH for over ten years. He is responsible
for the development of antibiotic policy and surveillance of
infections of central venous catheters. His interests include the
prevention of central venous catheter infection as well as the
development for novel methods for the detection and control
of infection by antibiotic resistant bacteria.
Paediatric Malignancy Unit
Dr Helena Kempski
Dr Helena Kempski formally transferred to Great Ormond Street
Hospital in 2004, from the Institute of Child Health (ICH) to head
the Paediatric Malignancy Unit (PMU). She previously held the
academic post of Senior Research Fellow in the Molecular
Haematology and Cancer Biology (MHCB) unit at ICH and continues to
maintain an honorary research position with
UCL/ICH. Helena's research interests include: (1)
Acquired genomic changes in the acute leukaemias of infancy and
childhood, (2) Transient abnormal myelopoiesis in Down Syndrome
newborns, and (3) The application of single cell analysis in
minimal residual disease. In addition to directing the PMU hospital
diagnostic service, Helena is a member of the steering group
committee of the UK Cancer Cytogenetics Group (UKCCG), and is a
group leader in the MHCB research unit at UCL/ICH.