Current Opinion in Supportive and Palliative Care was launched in 2007. It is one of a successful series of review journals whose unique format is designed to provide a systematic and critical assessment of the literature as presented in the many primary journals. The fields of supportive and palliative care are divided into 12 sections that are reviewed once a year. Each section is assigned a Section Editor, a leading authority in the area, who identifies the most important topics at that time. Here we are pleased to introduce the Journal's Section Editors for this issue.
Anthony H. Dickenson
Anthony H. Dickenson, BSc, PhD, FmedSci, FBPharmcolS is Professor of Neuropharmacology in the Department of Neuroscience, Physiology and Pharmacology at University College, London, UK. He gained his PhD at the National Institute for Medical Research, London, UK, and has held posts in Paris, California and Sweden. His research interests are pharmacology of the brain, including the mechanisms of pain and how pain can be controlled in both normal and pathophysiological conditions, and how to translate basic science to the patient.
Prof. Dickenson is an Honorary Member of the British Pain Society, was a Member of the Council of the International Association for the Study of Pain for six years and is Section Editor for the journal Pain. He has authored more than 340 refereed publications and has an h index of 90, all due to his motivated and brilliant research team. He is a founding and continuing Member of the Wellcome Trust funded London Pain Consortium.
Prof. Dickenson has given plenary lectures at the World Congress on Pain, the American Pain Society, the European Pain Congress, the Canadian Pain Society, the Belgium Pain Society, ASEAPs, the Scandinavian Pain Society, the British Pain Society, the Thailand Pain Society, the Irish Pain Society, the Singapore Pain Society, the Australian Pain Society, the New Zealand Pain Society and many other international and national meetings. He has also spoken at the Royal Institution, to GPs, and to schools on pain.
Paul Farquhar-Smith has been a Consultant in pain and anaesthetics for 14 years and is a Fellow of the Faculty of Pain of the Royal College of Anaesthetists. He has a PhD in visceral pain and cannabinoids. He works in chronic cancer pain in close collaboration with supportive and palliative care services.
A major interest of his is neuropathic pain in cancer survivors, such as chronic pain after surgery and chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain (CIPN). He is involved in the London Cancer Vanguard project developing pathways and recommendations for CIPN. He has written in reference textbooks and in the British Pain Society guidelines for cancer pain and has lectured nationally and internationally on these subjects. He is currently co-Chair of the British Pain Society/Association for Palliative Medicine Joint Working Group on Pain in Cancer Patients.
Kirsty Bannister graduated from UCL, United Kingdom, in 2003 with a BSc in Pharmacology (first class honours) before completing a Master of Research and subsequent PhD in Epigenetics at Imperial College London, United Kingdom. In 2008, Kirsty began a post-doctoral placement back at UCL in the Neuropharmacology of Pain laboratory, investigating neural and pharmacological systems that sub-serve pain transmission and modulation in the spinal cord and brain. Kirsty joined King's College London, United Kingdom, in the autumn of 2017 on a permanent basis as a Lecturer in Neuropharmacology and Principal Investigator. Her interests remain investigating descending mechanisms of pain control in both normal and pathological conditions, and how to translate basic science to the patient. Kirsty has authored 25 refereed publications and has led multiple symposia at international meetings including the World Congress on Pain, European Pain Federation EFIC, Pain Mechanisms and Therapeutics, and The Physiological Society. In 2017, Kirsty won the EFIC IBSA publication award for her original research article ‘An investigation into the inhibitory function of serotonin in DNIC’, and in 2019 was awarded a Springboard Grant to investigate the functionality and anatomy of endogenous descending controls.
Nicole Blijlevens is Internist-Hematologist and Head of the Department of Hematology at the Radboud University Medical Centre in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. She graduated with a PhD in Medical Sciences at the Radboud University Nijmegen in 2005 with her thesis investigating mucosal barrier injury in hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients. She continued her research in supportive care, especially focused on complications of anti-cancer treatment such as infections, mucositis and graft-versus-host disease. She launched citrulline as marker of intestinal therapy-induced mucositis and headed a landmark study of Palifermin in the prevention of oral mucositis in high-dose melphalan treated autologous stem cell transplant patients.
She has headed up, as principal investigator, many (inter-)national clinical studies in hematology patients, and was appointed Professor of Hematology in 2013. She has participated in various studies for the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (chaired the EBMT Mucositis Advisory Group), the European Conference on Infections in Leukemia, the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer, and the HOVON (chairs the HOVON Supportive Care Study Group). She founded the HEMA-ICU Study Group in the Netherlands, who study intensive supportive treatment in cancer patients together with intensivists nationwide. She is also an active member of the Multinational Association of Supportive Care in Cancer Mucositis Study Group and co-authored different updates of the MASCC/ISOO clinical practice guidelines for the management of mucositis.
She is author of more than 130 peer-reviewed research publications and 15 book chapters, all in the area of supportive cancer care. She has been the President of the National Society of Hematology and Treasurer of HOVON since 2015.
Andrea M. Stringer
Dr Andrea M. Stringer leads research focussing on the role of the intestine related to vitamin D with musculoskeletal outcomes. Andrea's broad area of research has focussed primarily on gut function, with the focus of this now on the gut-bone axis and the role of the gut microbiome in this environment. She works closely with the Musculoskeletal Biology Research Group.
Andrea's broad area of expertise is in developing strategies for preventing or treating oral and gastrointestinal damage following cancer treatments (mucositis) to reduce the burden of cancer. She has been involved in multiple pre-clinical investigations with growth factors, and probiotics to investigate their effectiveness in treating cancer treatment-induced mucositis. Andrea's work has also encompassed identifying the mechanisms underpinning the damage that occurs following cancer treatments, with studies investigating the microbiome, inflammatory cytokines, the mucus barrier, and the enteric nervous system. Her current work focusses on the role of vitamin D in the intestine, specifically the effects of the microbiome, inflammatory cytokines and the mucus barrier.