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31 August 2023

New Co-Heads of Department of Basic & Clinical Neuroscience

Appointment of Professor Sandrine Thuret and Professor Karl Peter Giese introduces a new collaborative leadership structure for the department.

Sandrine Thuret and Peter Giese Co-Heads Dep BCN
Professor Karl Peter Giese (left) and Professor Sandrine Thuret (right)

Professor Sandrine Thuret and Professor Karl Peter Giese have been appointed as Co-Heads of the Department of Basic & Clinical Neuroscience at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN), starting 1 September 2023.

The appointment brings a new collaborative leadership structure for the department. Professor Thuret and Professor Giese’s mission will be to provide the best possible environment for world-class fundamental and clinical research in neurodegeneration and mechanisms of mental health while they strive to promote a culture of collaboration, research integrity, respect and inclusivity. The new Co-Heads will also continue to facilitate the close collaborations that the Department has with King’s College Hospital, Guy’s Hospital and St Thomas’ Hospital and people affected by neurodegenerative conditions to ensure novel treatments are both effective and practical.

Professor Sandrine Thuret is Head of the Neurogenesis & Mental Health Laboratory and was previously interim Head of the Basic & Clinical Neuroscience Department. She is Director of the UKRI Medical Research Council Doctoral Training Partnership in Biomedical Sciences, and co-Director of the Wellcome-funded PhD programme in Mental Health Research for Health Professionals.

Professor Thuret is renowned for her work on adult hippocampal neurogenesis. Her lab is investigating the environmental and molecular mechanisms which control the production of new neurons, and how these impact mood and memory. She is also a strong supporter of diversity and inclusion initiatives and a member of the IoPPN culture, equality, diversity and inclusion committee.

Stepping into this role with Peter will be the opportunity to continue improving the culture at the Department of Basic & Clinical Neuroscience, facilitating collaborations among researchers and professional services staff, shaping research and education goals, and driving departmental success while developing individuals.

Professor Sandrine Thuret

Professor Karl Peter Giese is Professor of Neurobiology of Mental Health. He has published over 100 publications and edited two books on memory mechanisms. Professor Giese's expertise lies in uncovering the memory mechanisms in health and disease. His lab is currently investigating the molecular and cellular basis of memory storage across the lifespan, brain mechanisms in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, as well as modelling intellectual disability in mice. 

I am very excited to team up with Sandrine to co-lead the Department of Basic & Clinical Neuroscience into an era of improved research, education, and culture.

Professor Karl Peter Giese

Professor Simon Wessely, Interim Executive Dean of the IoPPN, added, “I am confident that Sandrine and Peters’ joint leadership will foster great research, excellent education and create an inclusive and supportive culture. In this instance I am particularly confident because both have stepped up to the plate before as very competent Interim Head of Departments, so they know what they are doing, and equally important, they know what lies ahead.”

The Department of Basic & Clinical Neuroscience is situated in the Maurice Wohl Clinical Neuroscience Institute on Denmark Hill Campus. The department is one of four departments in the School of Neuroscience. It is home to The Wohl Cellular Imaging Centre and the UK Dementia Research Institute at King's, and the newly established UK Motor Neuron Disease (MND) Research Institute.

For more information, contact Annora Theong (School of Neuroscience Communications Manager).

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Karl Peter Giese

Professor of Neurobiology of Mental Health