Professor Behr is Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and Consultant Cardiologist and Electrophysiologist.
Professor Behr was educated at the Manchester Grammar School and studied medical sciences at St John's College, University of Cambridge from 1987. His undergraduate training was completed with distinction in 1993 at Guy's Hospital, London. His general medical training continued at Guy's and Lewisham Hospitals and he was then appointed to the South-West London Specialist Registrar Cardiology Training Programme in 1997. Professor Behr completed training at St George's Hospital in 2007, sub-specialising in clinical electrophysiology under the supervision of Dr Edward Rowland, Dr David Ward and Dr Vince Paul.
From 1999 to 2003 he undertook research at St George’s Hospital, London under the supervision of Professor William McKenna, studying the epidemiology, pathology, genetics and phenotype of unexpected and unexplained sudden death victims (SADS) and their families, an area in which he is now considered an international expert. He was also supervised by Professor John Camm in the non-invasive and genetic study of the electrophysiological effects of drugs, developing the British Heart Foundation (BHF) funded program grant: the Drug-induced Arrhythmia Risk Evaluation (DARE) study.
These early areas of research interest in cardiac genetics have developed and attracted further grant awards as principal and co-applicant from the British Heart Foundation, Medical Research Council, European Union (FP7) and the international Serious Adverse Events Consortium (iSAEC).
He has authored and co-authored papers in the Lancet, British Medical Journal, Journal of Clinical Investigation, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, Circulation, European Heart Journal, Nature Genetics, Heart, and Heart Rhythm amongst others. He has given invited lectures at many national and international meetings including the American Heart Association, Heart Rhythm Society (HRS), Europace/Cardiostim (European Heart Rhythm Association, EHRA), European Society of Cardiology (ESC) & Asia Pacific Heart Rhythm Society (APHRS), British Cardiovascular Society (BCS), and Heart Rhythm Congress (British Heart Rhythm Society, BHRS).
Professor Behr is past-president of the Association for Inherited Cardiac Conditions (AICC) having been president secretary and council member over the first ten years of its life. He has developed patient pathways and organised AGMs and scientific sessions for AICC membership, British Cardiovascular and Heart Rhythm Societies.
He co-leads the arrhythmia syndrome subdomain of the UK 100,000 Genomes Cardiovascular Genome England Clinical Interpretation Partnership addressing eligibility criteria, data models and research proposals as chair of a national collaboration. Professor Behr is an editorial board member of the Heart Rhythm journal and co-wrote international guidelines for diagnosis and management of arrhythmia syndromes published in 2013. He is Health Care Partner lead for the European Rare Disease Reference Network GUARD-HEART and co-chairs the South London ICC (SLICC) network. He leads on organisation of multi-disciplinary meetings and implementation of patient pathways in partnership with primary care, NHS London and Arrhythmia Advisory Group.
Professor Behr has acted as an expert advisor to: the charities Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and the BHF; the European Medicine Agency; the Human Genome Strategy Group (HGSG) Service Development Working Group; the Inherited Cardiac Condition Services Steering Group; the Public Health Genome Foundation Working Group for National Services for Inherited Cardiac Conditions; and the Committee for Implementation of Chapter eight of the National Service Framework.
He also has education and training responsibilities to junior doctors including acting as an educational supervisor, academic representative and interviewer for the Pan London Specialty Training Committee for Cardiology. He has supervised or co-supervised seven post-graduate degrees to completion with a further six students under continuing supervision.
Professor Behr is Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and Consultant Cardiologist specialising in Electrophysiology at St George's, University of London and St George's Hospital, London.
He co-leads the Inherited Cardiac Conditions clinic at St George's, coordinating a multi-disciplinary team that provides a single one-stop service to families including children. His research interests include:
sudden death risk: pathology, genomics and epidemiology linked to electronic health records
families with unexplained sudden deaths, the Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome (SADS) and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
ion channel diseases including the long QT and Brugada syndromes
cardiomyopathies including arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC)
the management and treatment of arrhythmias.
Grants (PI unless stated)
2003-8 BHF Special Project - Drug Induced Arrhythmia Risk Evaluation (DARE) Study: Co-Applicant: £1,700,000
2008-10 BHF Cardiac Genetic Nurse: £200,000
2009-11 Biotronik Research Nurse, Heart failure and Devices: £90,000
2009-11 Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) Research Fellowship: £87,400
2009-10 Serious Adverse Events Consortium - additional DARE study funding: $125,000
2009-12 EU FP7: ARITMO - Arrhythmogenic Potential of Drugs: Co-Applicant and work package leader €300,000 from €2,700,000
2010 Biotronik unrestricted grant for research into sudden death in the young: £38,000
2010-13 BHF Special Project Grant Next Generation Sequencing in Inherited Heart Disease: Co-applicant £1,000,000
2011-13 BHF Clinical Research Training Fellowship FS/11/71/28918: Future diagnostic role and novel genetic loci in SADS: £154,000
2012-14 BHF Project Grant: Repolarisation abnormalities in black athletes: Co-applicant £124,000
2012-14 MRC PhD fellowship: Genetic modifiers of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in the Old Order Amish: Co-supervisor: £138,000
2012 Biotronik unrestricted grant for research into sudden death in the young: £40,000
2012-14 BHF Project Grant: Influence of low frequency and rare variants on ECG risk traits for cardiac arrhythmias: Co-Applicant: £101,913
2013 CRY unrestricted grant: £20,000
2013-15 BHF Clinical Research Training Fellowship FS/13/78/30520 - Genetic risk in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: £207,044
2014-16 SEMCARE Semantic data platform EU FP7: Co-PI €248,608 from €2,499,000
2015-18 The Robert Lancaster Memorial Fund and CRY research fellowship. £237,000
2015-17 BHF Project Grant: Exome sequencing to discover new causative genes for TAAD (Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm and Dissection). £124,542
2016 The Robert Lancaster Memorial Fund donation McColl’s RG Ltd. £209,000
2016 ESC Research Fellowship €25,000
2016-19 BHF Project Grant PG/15/107/31908: Novel methods for risk assessment of patients with the Brugada syndrome: The Rare Arrhythmia Syndrome Evaluation (RASE) - Brugada study. £299,026
2017 The Robert Lancaster Memorial Fund donation McColl’s RG Ltd. £300,000
2017-19 Australian Medical Research Council Early Carrier Award: Belinda Gray. UK supervisor. £166,288
Expert advisor to Prevention and Prediction Summit, Medtronic, USA
Invited expert to the European Medicines Agency
Scientific Advisory Board to the SADS foundation, USA: Member
Scientific Program Committee Member EHRA 2018
Editorial Board Member, Heart Rhythm Journal, USA
Editorial Board Member, Cardiovascular Genetics & Genomics and Current Trends in Genomic Medicine
Visiting Professor of Cardiology, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen University, Denmark
EHRA representative to HRS/EHRA/APHRS writing group for guidelines for diagnosis and management of arrhythmia syndromes
International Serious Adverse Event Consortium Phenotyping Standardisation Project: Co-chair of expert working group for drug-induced Torsades de Pointes
Editorial Board of Frontiers in Genomic Physiology: Review Editor
European Molecular Genetics Quality Network (EMQN): Best Practice Guidelines in Long QT Genetic Testing: Expert Representative
Association of Inherited Cardiac Conditions (AICC) – President
100,000 Genome Project Cardiovascular GECIP Arrhythmia Subdomain Co-Lead
Association of Inherited Cardiac Conditions (AICC) – elected to first council and appointed secretary 2013-16; acting president 2014-15; president elect 2016
Heart Rhythm UK (HRUK) Familial Sudden Death Syndromes Statement Development Group: Indications for ICD implantation and genetic testing.
HRUK/British Heart Rhythm Society (BHRS) representative to the UK Cardiac Pathology Network
Department of Health and NHS
Inherited Cardiac Conditions National Steering Group: Member
South London Inherited Cardiac Conditions (SLICC) Network Co-chair
Human Genome Strategy Group: Service Development & Delivery Working Group: Expert clinical advisor
Inherited Cardiac Condition Services Steering Group: Commissioning framework development: Expert advisor
Committee for Implementation of Chapter 8 of the National Service Framework for Sudden Death: Expert advisor
Public Health Genome Foundation Working Group for National Services Inherited Cardiac Conditions: Expert advisor
Rare Arrhythmia Syndrome Evaluation (RASE) Consortium, UK
Pier Lambiase (UCL/Barts), Amanda Varnava (Imperial), Alison Muir, Pascal McKeown (Belfast), Gerry Carr-White (St Thomas’), Nick Gall (KCL), Jan Till, James Ware (Royal Brompton), Steve Page (Leeds)
European Translational Cardiovascular Pathology Network
SGUL: Mary Sheppard, Sanjay Sharma, Michael Papadakis, Maite Tome-Esteban
Italy: Cristina Basso, Gaetano Thiene, Domenico Corrado
Ireland: Joseph Galvin, Deirdre Ward, Aurelie Fabre
Denmark: Jytte Banner, Jacob Tfelt-Hansen.
Holland: Arthur Wilde, Hanno Tan, Allard Van der Waal, Rutger Hassink, Arian Vink
Switzerland: Katarzyna Michaud
Spain: Esther Zorio, Pilar Molina, Juan Gimeno-Blanes
Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome and Idiopathic VF
SGUL: Mary Sheppard, Sanjay Sharma, Michael Papadakis, Maite Tome-Esteban,
UK: Stuart Cook, James Ware, Jan Till (Royal Brompton)
Denmark: Michael Christiansen, Jacob Tfelt-Hansen.
Holland: Arthur Wilde, Connie Bezzina, Rutger Hassink, Folkert Asselbergs
Canada: Andrew Krahn, Jason Roberts
Australia: Chris Semsarian
New Zealand: John Skinner
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome – Trans-Atlantic SIDS Collaboration
USA: Dave Tester, Mike Ackerman (Mayo Clinic)
Denmark: Jacob Tfelt-Hansen
UK: David Fitzpatrick (Edinburgh), Peter Fleming (Bristol), Marta Cohen (Sheffield), Mike Simpson (KCL), Iona Jeffery (SGUL), Sanjay Sisodiya and Emma Matthews (UCL)
SGUL: John Camm, Steve Jeffery, Yalda Jamshidi
DARE study (BHF): Saad Shakir (DSRU, Southampton)
ARITMO EU FP7 group led by Miriam Sturkenboom, Erasmus, Holland
International SAEC led by Mr Arthur Holden and Professor Munir Pirmohammed, UK.
Leducq network alliance against SCD led by Professor Dan Roden, Vanderbilt, US.
SGUL: Mary Sheppard, Sanjay Sharma, Michael Papadakis, Yalda Jamshidi, Irina Chis Ster
UK: Pier Lambiase, Amanda Varnava, Pascal McKeown, Alison Muir
Holland: Arthur Wilde, Connie Bezzina, Hanno Tan
Thailand: Koonlawee Nademanee, Gum Veerakul
Denmark: Michael Christiansen, Jacob Tfelt-Hansen, Morten Olesen
France: Vincent Probst, Pascale Guicheney, Richard Redon, Julien Barc
USA: Dan Roden, Mike Ackerman, Al George, Dawood Darbar
Brugada gene discovery QRS Consortium
Collaborations in Cardiac Genetic Disease Including E1784K Consortium
SGUL: Mary Sheppard, Sanjay Sharma, Michael Papadakis, Maite Tome-Esteban, Yalda Jamshidi, Steve Jeffery, Irina Chis Ster
UK: Stuart Cook, James Ware (Royal Brompton) Jan Till, Pascal McKeown Chris Denning (Nottingham), Andrew Tinker (QMUL)
Japan: Naomasa Makita, Takeshi Aiba, Minoru Horie, Seiko Ono, Wataru Shimizu
Italy: Peter Schwartz, Lia Crotti
USA: Dan Roden, Mike Ackerman, Al George
Denmark: Michael Christiansen, Jacob Tfelt.
Holland: Arthur Wilde, Connie Bezzina, Michael Tanck
Canada: Andrew Krahn, Jason Roberts, Shubhayan Sanatani
UK Biobank CM Consortium: Harry Hemingway (Farr), Dan Roden, Chris Nelson (Leicester), Hugh Watkins (Oxford), Mary Sheppard, Irina Chis Ster, Adam Witney (SGUL)
Early Repolarisation Consortium: Yalda Jamshidi, Patricia Munroe (QMUL), Nilesh Samani (Leicester), Christian Hengstenberg (Munich), Harold Snieder, Ilja Nolte (Holland).