Neil's research is based at the Institute for Head and Neck Studies and Education (InHANSE), which is part of the Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences, at the University of Birmingham.
Thyroid Disease and Thyroid Cancer
Neil's main research interest is thyroid disease and cancer. He completed his PhD examining novel therapeutic targets for radio iodine-refractory thyroid cancer and has continued to have a strong translational research interest. His current focus is on clinical research into novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for thyroid cancer. He is site lead for a number of national multi centre trials in to thyroid disease and thyroid cancer, and is a member of the trial steering group for the ELaTION multi-centre clinical trial, assessing the role of ultrasound elastography in diagnosing thyroid cancer.
Neil has recently secured funding from the NIHR to carry out a national, multi centre trial looking at the role of radio frequency ablation in the management of benign thyroid nodule versus surgery (Radiofrequency ABlation of Benign Intrathyroidal Tumours, the RABBIT trial. This is currently in set up and will start recruiting in mid-2023. If you are a clinical interesting in participating please get in touch and more information can be sent out.
Neil is always seeking to develop new research collaborations with colleagues both in the UK and abroad, and welcomes expressions of interest from those wishing to undertake higher degrees in to thyroid cancer.
Head and Neck Cancer
Neil is involved in both clinical and translational research in to head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, as well as salivary gland neoplasms and qualitative research examining patients' experiences of head and neck cancer and treatment.
Global Cancer Care
Neil is the co-lead for the International Collaboration On Improving Cancer Outcomes in low and middle income countries (ICOnIC). This group, initially working in Africa (ICOnIC Africa), comprises clinicians, allied healthcare professions, patient groups, NGOs, research and training bodies, and government policy makers in 16 African countries. The ICOnIC Africa group has begun examining the reasons for late presentation of head and neck cancer in Africa, alongside building research capacity and infrastructure on the continent.
Neil has sat on the research committee of the African Organisation for Research and Training in Cancer (AORTIC), setting the agenda for cancer research in Africa, and helping to promote cancer research and supporting patients in Africa and beyond.
Neil has been actively engaged in research to help manage patients with COVID19, and to understand the impact of the pandemic on head and neck cancer treatment, and also cancer as a whole. A member of the international COVIDSurg collaborative, he has contributed to the understanding of the risks of COVID19 to cancer patients. he is member of the writing group for the COVIDTrache study group, describing the role of tracheostomy in patients with COVID19, and published a number of papers on the role of various interventions in the management and rehabilitation of patients with COVID19.