Paediatric Neurosciences

Paediatric Neurosciences research group


To pursue and support paediatric neuroscience research activities, both with colleagues in the University of Nottingham, in Nottingham Children’s Hospital at the Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust and beyond.

We are also committed to research training and support and supervise undergraduate studies for BMedSci, BSc, BM BS degrees, and post graduate studies for MSc, PhD, and MD qualifications. 



Research issues

Paediatric neurosciences underpin child development and disorders of child development. The central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and peripheral nervous system account for acute illness and long term conditions in 25-33% of paediatric inpatients and outpatients.

From preterm infants to adolescents, advances in paediatric neurology have made a huge contribution to understanding and health care. Many of the advances have been achieved by non-neurologists, e.g. neonatologists, paediatric oncologists, developmental psychiatrists, neurosurgeons, and others, indicating the far reaching and diverse influence of paediatric neuroscience.

What we are doing about...

1. Epilepsies

We are involved in clinical trials and systematic clinical audit and service evaluations. The diagnosis and management of epilepsies in children and young people is a very challenging area, and the Care Quality Commission has recently funded our national “Epilepsy 12” audit for a second round.

2. Sleep disorders

We have been involved in clinical trials and assessments of new treatments.

3. Syncope

We have led the development of innovative autonomic function testing in children and young people, and systematic evaluation of the investigation and management of transient loss of consciousness.

4. Headache

We have been involved in trials and in developing a national teaching programme for paediatricians.

5. Ataxia Telangiectasia

We host a nationally funded clinic for this rare life-shortening disease, and have been leading an international consortium in developing a neurology tool for clinical assessment. We hope to use this in trials in the future.

6. Inflammatory Demyelination

We are working with colleagues in adult neurology in Nottingham and in paediatric neurology in the UK to study the disease using 7T MRI, and the natural history in a prospective cohort study.



Some key publications

  • P Gringras, C Gamble, A P Jones, L Wiggs, P R Williamson, A Sutcliffe, P Montgomery, W P Whitehouse, I Choonara, T Allport, A Edmond, R Appleton. Melatonin for sleep problems in children with neurodevelopmental disorders: randomised double masked placebo controlled trial. British Medical Journal 2012; 345: e6664. Published online 2012 November 5. doi: 10.1136/bmj.e6664
  • Absoud M, Lim MJ, Chong WK, De Goede CG, Foster K, Gunny R, Hemingway C, Jardine PE, Kneen R, Likeman M, Nischal KK, Pike MG, Sibtain NA, Whitehouse WP, Cummins C, Wassmer E; The UK and Ireland Childhood CNS Inflammatory Demyelination Working Group. Paediatric acquired demyelinating syndromes: incidence, clinical and magnetic resonance imaging features. Multiple Sclerosis 2012.
  • Mills JKA, Ruslan NE, Lewis TG, Mughal K, Ali I, Ugar A, Wassmer E, Siddiqua A, Gupta R, Mordekar SR, Sharma R, Sasidharan L, Whitehouse WP. Retention rate of Gabapentin in children with intractable epilepsies at 1 year. Seizure 2012; 21: 28-31.
  • Sanne D, Murfitt J, Florence L, Thakker P, Whitehouse WP. Head-up tilt testing in children and young people: a retrospective observational study. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health 2011; 47: 292-98.
  • Ahmed MAS, Martinez A, Cahill D, Chong K, Whitehouse WP. When to image neurologically normal children with headaches: development of a decision rule. Acta Paediatrica 2010; 99: 940-943.
  • McIntyre J, Robertson S, Norris E, Appleton R, Whitehouse WP, Phillips B, Martland T, Berry K, Collier J, Smith S, Choonara I. Safety and efficacy of buccal midazolam versus rectal diazepam for emergency treatment of seizures in children: a randomised controlled trial. Lancet 2005; 366: 204-210.


PhD opportunities



Our group is sited at the Queen's Medical Centre where our research group and laboratory facilities are located in an embedded unit within the Children’s Hospital.

Group members



Related research




Paediatric Neurosciences Group

Division of Child Health, Obstetrics and Gynaecology
School of Medicine
The University of Nottingham
Queens' Medical Centre, E Floor, East Block
Nottingham, NG7 2UH

telephone: +44 (0) 115 924 63328