The Blizard institute is very pleased to be able to celebrate the inaugural lecture of Professor Tom Vulliamy which took place on Friday the 15 June 2017. The lecture was title ‘Searching for genes – a long unwinding road’.
Tom Vulliamy was born and raised in west London, son of John Vulliamy, an architect and Shirley Hughes, an author and illustrator of children’s books. He was educated at University College School and Oxford University. He obtained his PhD in 1982 in Neuroimmunology at University College London under the supervision of Martin Raff. He then moved to Harvard Medical School for a short postdoc with Jim Gusella, who was searching for the Huntington’s disease gene. He has worked in human genetics ever since.
Returning to the Royal Postgraduate Medical School in London, he worked with Lucio Luzzatto, discovering the molecular basis of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency. He then became a Clinical Scientist, working for the Hammersmith Hospital, where he established a molecular diagnostic laboratory. At the same time, his search for disease genes continued, and in the mid 1990’s he teamed up with Inderjeet Dokal and Philip Mason to study the bone marrow failure syndrome, dyskeratosis congenita. They were the first to show that this disease is the clinical manifestation of defective telomere maintenance.
He obtained honorary Lecturer and Senior Lecturer positions at Imperial College before moving to the Blizard Institute in 2006. Here, he has continued his work in gene discovery and was appointed Professor of Molecular Biology in 2015.