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Join us to celebrate a special milestone for our new professors and hear about their inspiring career journeys. Doors for this event will open on 16:45 (GMT), with the lectures to commence at 16:50. A drinks reception will be held after the lecture.

Professor Gudrun Kunst

Paradigm shifts in cardiovascular anaesthesia


Enhanced recovery was introduced over 20 years ago as a patient centred perioperative concept, describing a multimodal and multidisciplinary approach with the benefit of shorter length of stay and less postoperative complications. It was only recently introduced in cardiac surgical patients. We first described how the introduction of an enhanced recovery care bundle in cardiac patients is feasible and has the potential to reduce postoperative complications. Evidence based enhanced recovery guidelines for perioperative care in cardiac surgery were introduced recently and one of the recommendations suggests the use of novel biomarkers, plus biomarker-guided interventions to identify and treat patients at risk for kidney injury. This presentation will explore recent paradigm shifts towards kidney protection and the protection of other organs in cardiovascular anaesthesia.


Professor Gudrun Kunst has been Consultant Anaesthetist at King’s College Hospital since 2004. After qualifying from Medical School of the University of Heidelberg, in Germany in 1991, she trained at Heidelberg University Hospital and at the Royal Brompton Hospital in London, UK. Her clinical and academic interests include organ protection in cardiovascular anaesthesia.

Gudrun has been an examiner for the Primary Fellowship Examinations and she is the Pan-London Anaesthetic Academic Training Programme Director. She is the Grant Officer of the National Institute of Academic Anaesthesia and the Scientific Officer and Treasurer of the Association of Cardiothoracic Anaesthetists and Critical Care. Internationally, Gudrun chairs the Scientific Committee of the European Board of Cardiovascular Perfusionists. Gudrun has received prestigious national prizes, including the Royal College of Anaesthetist MacIntosh Professorship in 2019.

Professor Mieke Van Hemelrijck

The importance of collaborations: it takes an orchestra to play a symphony


While urology has been a common thread throughout my research career, from hypospadias, to transsexualism, bladder, prostate, kidney, and testicular cancers, the most important component of my career has been collaborations. A golden standard in research methodology is a multidisciplinary approach, but collaborations can do much more than that. My network of collaborations has instigated research ideas, partnerships, teaching activities, as well as friendships and new avenues of research methods. Hence, molecular/clinical epidemiology, quality of life research, real world evidence/big data, mixed methods, implementation sciences and patient/public involvement are all contributing to my research focused on improving outcomes and experiences of patients with cancer. A variety of examples can illustrate how these local and (inter)national collaborations have always put cancer patients first – a career path I look forward to continuing.


Professor Van Hemelrijck studied for an MSc in Biomedical Sciences (2001-2005) and an MSc in Statistical Analysis (2005-2006) at Ghent University, Belgium. While doing so, she became engaged in epidemiology research in the field of urology. She continued her epidemiological training by spending two years at the Harvard School of Public Health (2006-2008), where she obtained an MSc in Population & International Health, staying focused on urological research. From 2008-2010, she worked with Professor Holmberg at King’s College London and obtained a PhD in Cancer Epidemiology. In 2012, she was appointed as a Lecturer in Cancer Epidemiology at King’s College London. She leads the Translational Oncology and Urology Research (TOUR) Team in the School of Cancer & Pharmaceutical Sciences and became a Professor in late 2020.

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At this event

Gudrun  Kunst

Consultant Anaesthetist and Honorary Professor of Cardiovascular Anaesthesia

Mieke  Van Hemelrijck

Professor in Cancer Epidemiology