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Professor Ian Megson

BSc, PhD, FHEA, FSB; Head of Department of Diabetes and Cardiovascular Science, UHI

Prof Ian MegsonUHI Department of Diabetes & Cardiovascular Science
Highland Diabetes Institute
The Centre for Health Science
Old Perth Road

e: Ian Megson
t: +44 (0)1463 279 572
f: +44 (0)1463 711 245

Available to talk to the media about

  • Inflammation and free radicals: key players in the link between diabetes and cardiovascular disease?
  • Antioxidants in diabetes & cardiovascular disease
  • New drugs for preventing heart attacks in patients with diabetes
  • Pollutants and nanoparticles in cardiovascular disease
  • Potential benefits of a high oat diet in diabetes
  • Can markers of oxidative stress predict cardiovascular risk?


    Currently  Head of the UHI Department of Diabetes and Cardiovascular Science and Director of the Free Radical Research Facility, Professor Megson arrived at UHI to develop health research from scratch in 2006 and the team has since gone from strength to strength, boasting many successes in terms of grant funding and publications.

    Professor Megson has a degree in Physiology from the University of St Andrews, where his interest in nitric oxide and free radicals was sparked. A PhD investigating the release of nitric oxide from novel drugs followed at St Andrews’ renowned Flitney Laboratory (completed in 1993), after which he went on to complete his studies on the topic through a British Heart Foundation Post-doctoral Fellowship.

    In 1995, Professor Megson then moved to the University of Edinburgh where further post-doctoral work led to lectureship and senior lectureship posts.

    Professor Megson’s other roles across the Department encompass administrative duties including finance, health and safety, external grant funding and intellectual property as well as supervision of PhD and undergraduate research projects.

    Current research

    Role of free radicals in the initiation and progression of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

    • This initiative includes an investigation of the influence of nitric oxide and oxygen-centred free radicals on disease development, as well as novel therapies to enhance nitric oxide bioavailability or depress the harmful effects of oxygen-centred free radicals (antioxidants).
    • The latter interest has expanded the sphere of influence to include dietary interventions and drug therapies that might act primarily via antioxidant defences. In the past year, we have also developed a £2.1 M Lipidomics facility, with a particular focus on markers of lipid peroxidation and eicosanoids in diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
    • Linked to this theme is a long-standing collaborative programme of research with Profs Newby and Donaldson at the University of Edinburgh investigating the impact of nanoparticulate pollutants on free radical-mediated disease processes in blood vessels.

    Research groups/project committees

    • Fellow - Higher Education Academy
    • Fellow - Society of Biology
    • Chair - Scottish Natural Actives Programme
    • Founding Member - European Vascular Biology Society
    • Member - Scottish Cardiovascular Forum
    • Member - British Cardiovascular Society
    • Organiser - Nitric Oxide Congress (2012)
    • Organiser - Natural Products Biotechnology (2014)

    Publications (2006-present)