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Dr Alex Shortt
UCL Institute of Immunity and Transplantation
Royal Free Campus, Rowland Hill Street
  • Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer
  • Institute of Ophthalmology
  • Faculty of Brain Sciences

Mr Alex Shortt MB BCh MSc PhD FRCOphth PGDipCat/Ref

Wellcome Trust Fellow and Clinician-Scientist, UCL Institute of immunity and Transplantation

Alex is a clinician scientist who has undertaken joint academic and clinical training in ophthalmology through the NIHR’s Integrated Academic Training programme. Having been awarded his PhD in 2009 he then completed an NIHR Clinical Lectureship at the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre at Moorfields and the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology followed by two cornea and external disease fellowships at Moorfields Eye Hospital. He was appointed as an Honorary Consultant Ophthalmologist, Cornea and External Disease, at Moorfields Eye Hospital London in 2014. In May 2017 he left Moorfields to establish his own specialist corneal clinic.

Over the past 10 years, Alex’s research has focused on the development of cell therapies for corneal and conjunctival disease.  He is about to commence a prestigious 4-year Wellcome Trust Clinician Scientist Award investigating the response of the recipient’s immune system to engrafted stem cells. Alex’s goal is to improve the lives of patients with chronic, severe ocular surface disease through the delivery of novel cellular therapies using different therapeutic cell types.

Research Summary

Alex's current research activities and interests are:

  • Corneal Transplant Biology and Immunology
  • Corneal Stem Cell Transplant Transplant Immunology 
  • Clinical Trials of Corneal Therapies
  • Translation of novel corneal therapies into clinical practice
  • Clinical outcomes of limbal stem cell transplantation
  • Tracking of cells stem cells post transplantation using quantum dot nanotechnology
  • Novel approaches to ocular surface reconstruction
  • Complex corneal and ocular surface disorders
  • 3D imaging of the corneal limbal niche
  • In-vivo imaging of limbal epithelial stem cells
  • Structural and functional aspects of the limbal niche
  • Optimisation of clinical limbal stem cell cultures 
  • Systematic review and meta-analysis
  • Evidence based ophthalmology

01-JUL-2014 – 30-APR-2017 Honorary Consultant Ophthalmologist Corneal and External Disease Moorfields Eye Hospital, NHS Foundation Trust, United Kingdom
01-JUL-2014 Wellcome Trust Fellow and Clinician Scientist UCL Institute of Immunity and Transplantation UCL, United Kingdom
01-AUG-2009 NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Ophthalmology BMRC for Ophthalmology Moorfields Eye Hospital/UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2013 FRCOphth Fellow of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists – Ophthalmology Royal College of Ophthalmologists
2009 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Ophthalmology University College London
2004 MRCOphth Member of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists – Ophthalmology Royal College of Ophthalmologists
2001 MSc Master of Science – Physiology University College Dublin
1999 MBBS hons Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery (Honours) – Medicine/Surgery University College Dublin
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