Fellow Prof David Beeson Elected Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences

Our congratulations go to St Cross Fellow David Beeson, Professor of Molecular Neurosciences at NDCN, who has been elected a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences. This distinction recognises his world-leading research and exceptional contributions to the study of neuromuscular disorders where the communication between nerve cells and muscle is impaired.

His most recent research has focused on translating molecular knowledge of neuromuscular synapse biology into treatment for congenital myasthenic syndromes. Congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMS) are a group of inherited conditions that are present from birth or early childhood caused by many different genetic mutations. These mutations cause problems with the way messages are transmitted from the nerves to muscles, causing weakness and fatigue. 

Professor Beeson was the first to isolate cDNA and genomic clones for important receptor proteins of the synapse, namely muscle acetylcholine receptors and human rapsyn. His laboratory has identified numerous mutations involved in CMS and their direct correlation with the pathogenic molecular mechanisms. This was instrumental in the establishment of the highly successful National Specialist and Advisory Service for Congenital Myasthenic Syndromes in Oxford. Professor Beeson attends clinic there every week, advising on patient treatment based on the functional diagnostics undertaken in his laboratory. 

Fellowship of the Academy is based on exceptional contributions to medical science, either through original discoveries or sustained contributions over a career, and for translating this work into benefits for patients and the wider society. 

Ella Bedrock

Monday 21 May 2018