Dr Alexander Lyon
Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist, Heart Failure Theme Lead, Cardiovascular Biomedical Research Unit
Dr Alexander Lyon studied medicine at the University of Oxford where he was awarded a first-class degree in physiological sciences in 1995, achieving second place in the final honours school. After qualifying from the John Radcliffe Medical School in 1998, he trained as a junior doctor in cardiology in Oxford, in London (at Royal Brompton Hospital) and in Sydney, Australia.
He joined the cardiac medicine research group of Professor Sian Harding and Professor Philip Poole-Wilson, where he studied the influence of cardiac gene therapy upon ventricular arrhythmia generation. In 2005, he was awarded an MRC Clinical Research Training Fellowship.
Shortly later he completed his PhD in 2008, where he spent his first postdoctoral year studying the spatiotemporal patterns of mitochondrial function in the lab of Fadi Akar and Roger Hajjar at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York.
He was appointed a Walport Clinical Lecturer in Cardiology at Imperial College London in October 2008, and he completed his cardiology training at St Mary’s Hospital and Royal Brompton Hospital.
In 2012, Dr Lyon was appointed a senior lecturer and consultant cardiologist at Royal Brompton Hospital.
Dr Alexander Lyon’s clinical expertise includes:
- heart failure
- cardiovascular diseases caused by cancer treatments, known as cardio-oncology
- chemotherapy-induced heart failure
- Takotsubo syndrome
- cardiac gene therapy
- novel molecular and biological therapies for heart failure.
He runs a specialist clinic for patients with Takotsubo syndrome focusing on risk prediction and management of refractory symptoms.
He is also:
- clinical lead for the cardio-oncology service, Royal Brompton Hospital (2011-present)
- chair of UK Cardio-Oncology Consortium (2012- present)
- a member of Heart Failure Association Translational Research Committee (ESC: 2012-present).
He sees patients with a range of clinical problems including:
- heart valve disease
- coronary artery disease
Dr Lyon also specialises in the investigation of cardiac symptoms such as chest pain, breathlessness, palpitations (racing heart), dizzy spells and general cardiac health checks to guide risk factor management.
Dr Alexander Lyon is a co-investigator at the BHF Centre for Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine at Imperial College London. In addition, he is the lead for the heart failure research theme of the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) cardiovascular biomedical research unit (cBRU) at Royal Brompton Hospital.
Dr Lyon’s research interests include:
- abnormal calcium physiology in heart failure
- the influence of stress and high catecholamine levels on cardiac function
- mechanisms of ventricular arrhythmias in heart failure
- biological therapies for heart failure – these include gene therapy, stem cell therapy and myocardial tissue engineering. Dr Lyon is UK national coordinating investigator for CUPID 2 – the first UK cardiac gene therapy trial for advanced heart failure.
- RDT-PEF trial assessing the role of renal sympathetic denervation in patients with heart failure and preserved ejection fraction
- spatio-temporal patterns of mitochondrial dysfunction in the intact heart
- chemotherapy-induced heart failure and novel therapeutic options for patients with heart failure caused by anti-cancer therapies – Dr Lyon was a co-Principal Investigator
- new high resolution raspberry Pi multi camera system for remote monitoring of leg oedema in heart failure patients with Heartfelt Technologies.
He is coordinating both a national and European strategy to advance knowledge and improve care for individuals with Takotsubo syndrome.
Dr Alexander Lyon has presented at numerous national and international meetings in the field of cardiac calcium pathophysiology, gene therapy in heart failure, chemotherapy-induced cardiac dysfunction and heart failure, and Takotsubo cardiomyopathy.
He is a senior lecturer at Imperial College London, with his first two PhD students being awarded their theses in 2011/12. He is currently supervising nine Imperial College PhD students.
Dr Alexander Lyon has reviewed manuscripts for various scientific journals including:
- British Medical Journal
- Circulation Research
- European Heart Journal, Heart
- European Journal of Heart Failure
- American Journal of Physiology
- British Journal of Pharmacology
- Journal of Cardiac Failure
- Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry and Medical Science Monitor.
Dr Alexander Lyon has received a number of academic awards throughout his career, such as:
- the inaugural Bernard and Joan Marshall Young Investigator Prize from the British Society for Cardiovascular Research (2010)
- the British Cardiovascular Society Young Investigator Competition Winner (Basic Sciences) (2009)
- the Medical Research Society Raftery Prize in Cardiovascular Sciences Winner (2008)
- the European Meeting of International Society of Heart Research Best Scientific Poster Prize (2008)
- the Royal Society of Medicine Cardiology Section President’s Medal Winner (2007).
Dr Alexander Lyon is the current president of the British Cardio-Oncology Society and he is the cardiology advisor to the charity Macmillan Cancer Support.
He is a member of the International Cardio-Oncology Society and Dr Lyon was co-chair of the 2017 Global Cardio-Oncology Summit which hosted 325 specialists from 33 countries at the Royal College of Physicians in London in September 2017.
Valerie, from Shropshire, came to Royal Brompton following a two year struggle with breathing difficulties. Read her story of how she finally got diagnosed.
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