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Physiology is the scientific study of the functions and mechanisms of living systems and is therefore the main foundation on which all the biological and medical sciences have been built. Physiology is an integrative discipline, and central to our understanding of the coordinated homeostatic processes that maintain normal human body function. Understanding the normal function of living systems underpins our knowledge of disease processes and is thus essential for targeting therapeutics.

Dr Suman Rice and Dr David Gillott are co-Heads of the Section of Physiology. As one of the largest sections, members of the physiology section are involved in teaching, research and enterprise within the University. It occupies central stage among biomedical science disciplines as it incorporates chemistry, physiology, neuroscience, molecular biology, biochemistry and toxicology and it is a key component of pharmacy and medicine.

Our section is committed to delivering excellent & innovative teaching practice across multiple undergraduate and postgraduate courses. Areas of physiology research and teaching amongst our members are diverse and include reproduction, cardiovascular, haematology, endocrinology, respiratory, renal, gastroenterology and neurology.

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Who we are
Dr Suman Rice (Head) – Reader in Reproductive Physiology

Research interest: follicle growth in human ovary, pathophysiology of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, insulin resistance and its impact on folliculogenesis.

Dr David Gillott (Head) – Senior Lecturer in Reproductive Physiology

Research interest: preservation of fertility for young women diagnosed with cancer.

Stephanie Bayne – Lecturer in Clinical Physiology

Research interest: cardiopulmonary exercise testing in adult congenital heart disease. 

Dr James Buckley – Senior Lecturer in Physiology

Research interest: respiratory immunology and pharmacology, as well as factors associated with student experience in higher education. 

Martyn Bucknall - Senior Lecturer in Clinical Physiology

Research interest: service provision in respiratory/sleep investigation units.

Dr Omar Janneh – Senior Lecturer in Pharmacology/Physiology Education

Research interest: Pharmacology of Anti-Cancer drugs 

Dr Penny Murphy – Senior Lecturer in Physiology

Research interest: using computers for effective learning & designing on-line resources

Dr Yaw Ohene-Abuakwa - Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences Education

Research interest: red cell differentiation; sickle cell disease 

Cynthia Simon - Senior Lecturer in Clinical Physiology

Research interest: hypertension related to ethnicity

Dr Peter Skorupski – Lecturer in Physiology

Research interest: temporal dynamics of bumblebee vision & human time perception in the sub-second range.

Dr Benjamin Taiwo – Lecturer in Reproductive Physiology and Endocrinology

Research interest: male fertility, modulators of sperm function and sperm-oocyte interactions.

What we do

Members of the physiology section are heavily involved in multiple programmes, including the BSc Biomedical Science, BSc Healthcare Science, MBBS5, and MPharm undergraduate courses. We contribute substantially to teaching across Physician Associate, MBBS4 and MRes post-graduate courses. In addition to traditional pedagogical methodologies, we use a range of innovative approaches such as inter-professional education (IPE) and small group problem-based learning to enable the delivery of knowledge and the development of key skills that will equip students to succeed in their careers in academia, industry or the NHS. Our teaching is enhanced by use of state-of-the art laboratories for practicals and the unique pathology museum which brings theoretical physiology and pathophysiology to life. 


Members of the section carry out internationally recognized research in different areas of physiology which informs our teaching. As a section we have extensive expertise in molecular, cellular and whole body experimental approaches that we utilize in our research. We supervise a range of research projects aimed at undergraduate, MSci/MRes and MDRes/PhD students. For specific details of research interests and publications, please see personal profile pages.

Academic-Related Activities

Members of our section are active members of numerous learned societies including the Society for Reproduction and Fertility, the Society for Cardiological Science, British Pharmacological Society, British Andrology Society where they also serve as elected committee and council members. In addition many of our member are fellows of the Higher Education Authority (HEA). We also have collaborations with numerous clinical colleagues across NHS trusts and with the pharmaceutical industry. 


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