New Director arrives at Institute of Translational Medicine

01 June 2016

Professor Subrata Ghosh

Professor Subrata Ghosh

Professor Subrata Ghosh today took up his new post as Director of the Institute of Translational Medicine (ITM).

Professor Ghosh brings a wealth of experience with him as he takes the helm of the world-class £24 million facility, led by Birmingham Health Partners, which aims to accelerate the delivery of personalised healthcare using pioneering sciences.

With expertise in the fields of translational immunology of inflammatory bowel disease and novel therapeutic approaches, Prof Ghosh will lead the development of the ITM, taking over from interim director Dr Tom Clutton-Brock. He will also hold the position of Professor of Translational Medicine at the University of Birmingham (UoB).

In the following Q&A Professor Ghosh gives a personal insight into his career so far, why he was attracted to his new position in Birmingham and, briefly, his vision for the ITM, which is based in the Heritage Building at University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB).

Could you tell us about your background to date?

I am an academic as well as a clinician in the field of gastroenterology. My special interest is in understanding what causes inflammatory bowel disease and how to treat it with new discoveries. After training in Bristol, Tokyo and Edinburgh, I worked at the University of Edinburgh (research lead in gastroenterology), Imperial College London (Professor and Division Lead/Chair of Gastroenterology) and University of Calgary (Academic and Clinical Department Head of Medicine and Professor of Medicine).  I have published 398 manuscripts, have an h-index of 61 and have delivered over 600 international lectures.

What is your drive for getting up in the morning?

I am driven by getting people from different specialties and with different skills to interact with each other so that innovations can be brought together to benefit the patients and the community rapidly.

What are you most looking forward to doing in your new role?

I am looking forward to creating a real culture of innovation and translation of scientific discoveries into patient care across the different stakeholder organisations.

What is your biggest achievement to date?

I am proud of establishing and strengthening centres of excellence in treatment of inflammatory bowel disease at Edinburgh, Hammersmith Hospital and Calgary. These have benefited thousands of patients suffering from these debilitating diseases.

What attracted you to working in Birmingham?

I was impressed by the drive to excel in life sciences, the shared goals of Birmingham Health Partners by bringing the NHS and University closer together, and a compelling vision to innovate. I felt it was close to bringing about major changes in the way clinicians and researchers work together.  I was also influenced by great science on the campus, biomedical engineering and IT, and tremendous facilities for conducting fast track clinical trials.

How will the ITM impact on patients and drug development?

The ITM will create a platform where scientists, researchers and clinicians can interact to realise that there are great multidisciplinary opportunities to understand diseases and health and bring about innovations to benefit the patients and communities. I expect the ITM to make Birmingham a tremendous hub of Life Sciences enterprise in UK and globally.

How will the BHP alliance benefit the ITM mission?

I see the BHP alliance really facilitating scientists, researchers and clinicians to share common visions and goals so that the right treatment reaches the right patient at the right time.

What sets Birmingham apart when it comes to translational medicine?

Birmingham offers great diversity of population, a culture of fast track clinical trials and the science to promote new discoveries. It is a great hub, with easy access to a large number of Universities with collaborative opportunities and an entrepreneurial culture. In a number of spheres it is demonstrating the ambition to excel.