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British Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition

Joint BSPGHAN / NIHR – Children Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition Research Working Group

Who are we?


Chair: Marco Gasparetto (2021 - 2024)


Dr David Campbell (paediatric gastroenterologist, Newcastle – former Chair)

Prof Morris Gordon (paediatrician with an interest in paediatric gastroenterology, professor of evidence medicine, UcLan, Preston)

Ms Vasiliki Sinopoulou (researcher, dietitian, UcLan, Preston)

Ms Joanne Brind (CNS, UCLH, Great Ormond Street Hospital, London)

Dr Rohit Gowda (paediatrician with an interest in paediatric gastroenterology, Maidstone)

Dr Farah Barakat (paediatric gastroenterology consultant, Brighton – former trainee rep)

Dr Zachary Green (paediatric gastroenterology trainee, Cardiff, current BSPGHAN research trainee rep)




Research recently funded by BSPGHAN:

Joint Guts-UK BSPGHAN Research Grants

  • Assigned every two years
  • 40,000 British pounds
  • Research studies on any topic within the spectrum of paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition
  • Envisaged as development grant for the collection of pilot or proof-of-concept data that will enable high-quality competitive applications to be made subsequently to a research council or other large funders, such as the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR).
  • Open to clinician and scientist investigators based at a UK university or hospital.

2023 – Deadline for applicants is the 11th of September 2023: please follow this link to find more information and apply:

2021 Edition awarded to Prof. Anil Dhawan, Dr Jessica Nulty, Dr Vandana Jain, Dr Sunitha Vimalesvaran, Mr Hanish Anand at King’s College Hospital, London. Project title: “Umbilical Cord–Mesenchymal Stromal / Stem Cell Immunotherapy for Biliary Atresia”


Guts UK/BSPGHAN small start up grant on pancreatic diseases

  • New small Grant piloted in 2021, that aims to facilitate a research project focused on epidemiology and management of pancreatic diseases in children
  • 10,000 British pounds
  • 2021 Edition awarded to Dr Tassos Grammatikopulos, Dr Jemma Day, Dr Paul Henderson, Prof Mark Davenport, Mrs Gillian Geaney at King’s College Hospital, London, and at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, Edinburgh. Project title: “Mental health and quality of life in children and young people with acute recurrent and chronic pancreatitis”


BIG Awards - BSPGHAN Innovation Grants Programme. Improving care for children with gastrointestinal, liver and nutritional disorders

2023 Edition – Awarded to Dr Lisa Whyte, Consultant Paediatric Gastroenterologist at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, and Y Liang, H Norton. Project title: “Interferential therapy (IFT) for the treatment of children with GI dystonia”.

James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership on Digital Health Technology for Adolescents and Young Persons with IBD – a project funded by BSPGHAN and the BSG (British Society of Gastroenterology) – 2021-2023

Project leaders: Dr Priya Narula (Sheffield Children’s Hospital), Dr Naila Arebi (Saint Mark’s Hospital, London)

BSPGHAN Representatives in the Steering Committee: Dr Marco Gasparetto and Dr Jochen Kammermeier (chair of the BSPGHAN IBD Working Group)


BSPGHAN Research Career Symposium on the 9th of November 2023

Dr Marco Gasparetto and Dr Zachary Green have organised a virtual information day on “research in PGHAN in the UK”. This will offer a forum for outstanding researchers across the UK to meet and discuss with BSPGHAN how our Society could best support research needs beyond what is already available.

Research active trainees, MD and PhD candidates, post-docs and medical students with an interest in PGHAN in the UK are invited and will be provided with an overview of the main research active centres in the country and their main research areas.

Please follow this link to register your place (registration is free):


BSPGHAN Systematic Review Fellowship

Opportunity offered by Prof. Morris Gordon and Vasiliki Sinopoulou at UCLAN (University of Central Lancashire)

The first fellowship was awarded in 2022 to Dr Gregor Scott, ST4 trainee in Paediatric Gastroenterology in Glasgow.


BSPGHAN Research Prize

Launched in 2021 and first awarded to Dr James Ashton during the BSPGHAN Annual Meeting in April 2022, its second edition was awarded to Konstantinos Gerasimidis in 2023.

This prize is a demonstration of the Society’s esteem to Members that actively engage in research within paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition.

Who is Eligible:

All associates, trainees and junior consultants within their first 3 years of appointment

What is the Research Award:

Award of £500 and a Recognition Certificate to be presented by the President of BSPGHAN and the Chair of the RWG, on behalf of the wider society at the BSPGHAN Annual Meeting.

What is recognised:

  • Individual and wider team conducting sustained research activity over 3 years
  • Focus of the award committee will be productivity and persistence
  • Research activity that influences practice, or substantially adds to current understanding


Virtual Teaching Programme

The BSPGHAN Research Committee continues to support the national Virtual Teaching Programme by offering three monthly presentations on basic science and translational research (sessions coordinated by Dr Gasparetto) alternated with sessions on research methodology (coordinated by Prof Gordon).

Recent research talks:

May 2023 – Dr Marco Gasparetto, paediatric gastroenterology consultant at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Chair of the BSPGHAN Research Committee - What is new in IBD etio-pathogenesis?

February 2023 – Dr Paul Henderson, paediatric gastroenterology consultant at Edinburgh Royal Children’s: “The PINPOINT study: PIBD epidemiology in the UK”

November 2022 – Joanne Brind, CNS at UCL – Great Ormond Street Hospital, member of the BSPGHAN Research Committee: ““Qualitative methodology applied to interviewing Children and Young People, and their carers”

September 2022 – Dr Konstantinos Gkikas, post-doc research at Glasgow Children’s Hospital – “Setting up and coordinating a translational research study – tips from personal experience with the IPENS trial”.

The next research talk is planned for the 19th of September: Dr Priya Narula (Sheffield Children’s Hospital) will teach on the Priority Setting Partnership Process, with examples from the BSPGHAN-BSG project on Digital Health Technology for Children and Adolescents with IBD, recently concluded.


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