Professor John Atherton
Professor John Atherton took up office as Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences on 1 August 2015. As PVC for Medicine and Health Sciences, John has executive responsibility for the Faculty and is a member of the University Executive Board. As well as his Faculty responsibilities, John chairs the university’s Environmental Sustainability Committee.
John is a Professor of Gastroenterology and a practicing Honorary Consultant Gastroenterologist with Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust. He continues to teach medical and microbiology students and to pursue his research interests in upper gastro-intestinal diseases.
John’s medical education was at Cambridge and then Oxford University. After post-graduate training in medicine and gastroenterology he trained in digestive diseases research in the UK and in infectious disease research in Vanderbilt University, USA. He joined the University of Nottingham in 1995 and became a full Professor in 2001. After leading the Division of Gastroenterology, John became Head of the School of Clinical Sciences in 2009 and, following rearrangement of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Foundation Dean of the new School of Medicine in 2013.
Outside Nottingham John is Chair of Medical Schools Council, which co-ordinates all UK medical schools. He is also a Non-Executive Director of Nottingham Universities Hospital NHS Trust and chairs the Quality Assurance Committee. He has held many previous national and international roles including as Secretary-General of United European Gastroenterology, the body representing gastroenterologists and others interested in digestive diseases throughout Europe.
Teaching and Research Summary
John is a committed teacher who still delivers lectures to medical students and specialised microbiology masters students and teaches clinical medical students on the wards and in clinics. He continues to practice clinical gastroenterology as an NHS Consultant through patient clinics and endoscopy lists. His main research interests are in the virulence of the stomach bacterium Helicobacter pylori, in the pathogenesis of peptic ulceration and gastric adenocarcinoma, and in the role of H. pylori in modulating other diseases. He held both MRC Clinician Scientist and Senior Clinical Fellowships and was awarded the Sir Francis Avery Jones Research Medal by the British Society of Gastroenterology.