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Biography

Dr Paul Taylor is a cardiovascular physiologist, with an interest in the early life origins of cardiovascular and metabolic disease. In 1994 he obtained a PhD in Physiology from United Medical & Dental Schools, London University investigating the mechanisms underlying the vascular complications of diabetes. This was followed by postdoctoral training in the Vascular Biology Unit, Boston University USA, and Department Clinical Pharmacology, St George’s Hospital Medical School, London. A further post-doctoral position within the Maternal & Fetal Research Unit at King’s College London combined interests in the role of nutrition in cardiovascular health and disease with the emerging field of developmental programming. Dr Taylor was appointed Lecturer in Developmental Programming, Division of Reproduction & Endocrinology in 2005, Senior Lecturer in Developmental Programming, Division of Women’s Health in 2008 and Reader in Women’s Health, in 2014 within the Division of Women’s Health, School of Life Course Science, Kings College London.

Dr Taylor’s research interests include the ‘developmental programming’ effects of maternal nutrition and the hormonal environment in obese and diabetic pregnancy on the offspring’s future cardiovascular and metabolic development. The goal of the Developmental Programming Research Group is “To understand the consequences of maternal obesity in pregnancy on the future health of the child”. Specifically, the group aim to investigate the physiological processes and the cellular and molecular mechanisms whereby a baby’s exposure to an aberrant hormonal environment in pregnancy and lactation gives rise to increased risk of obesity and cardiovascular disorders in later life. Publications in the journal Hypertension and PNAS provide evidence for the sympathetic origins of hypertension secondary to maternal obesity.Recent research efforts, funded by the British Heart Foundation have focused on the translation of basic science mechanisms to the clinic and the characterisation of autonomic dysfunction in neonates and infants born to pregnancies complicated by obesity, diabetes and caesarean section. Preclinical studies have primarily focused on intervention strategies to improve outcome and offspring cardio-metabolic health in obese pregnancy. RCUK, industry and ODA funding has supported investigations of pre- and probiotic interventions to modify the maternal and offspring gut microbiome in animal models of obesity in pregnancy. A Newton Funded ethnobotany project with Dr Elena Zambrano’s group at National Institute of Medical Science and Nutrition Salvador Zubirán in Mexico was recently shortlisted for the Newton Prize 2018.