Scientific Advisory Council

The Scientific Advisory Council (SAC) provides expert, independent scientific, clinical and lay support, advice and critical insights to JDRF in the UK. It also advises on government policies affecting JDRF, the research community and those living with type 1 diabetes. Its members are ambassadors and spokespeople raising JDRF’s profile and increasing awareness of type 1 diabetes research and treatments in the UK.

Simon Heller - Sheffield (Chair)
Simon is Professor of Clinical Diabetes at the University of Sheffield, Director of Research and Development and Honorary Consultant Physician at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Foundation Trust. He is currently the National Speciality Lead in Diabetes to the NIHR Clinical Research Network. He led the first DAFNE trial and two subsequent NIHR programme grants aimed to improve the effectiveness of the intervention. He is an NIHR Senior Investigator interested in the pathophysiological responses to hypoglycaemia and hypoglycaemia unawareness, the potential contribution and mechanisms of hypoglycaemia to cardiovascular mortality, the use of technologies to reduce hypoglycaemia.

Jake Bromley - West Cumbria (Vice-Chair)
Jake is a lay member of the SAC representing the views of adults with Type 1 Diabetes, having been diagnosed at 28 while serving in the RAF. Now working as an Engineer for Sellafield Ltd he is particularly interested in the research and development of technology in the treatment and management of Type 1 Diabetes, and in improving patient access policy to ensure that the broadest possible range of options are available to the Type 1 Diabetic community.

Nicola Baillie - Edinburgh
Nicola is a General Practitioner who lives in Edinburgh, Scotland. She has four children, two of whom have type 1 diabetes and as a family they have been living with type 1 for ten years. She is currently also working with JDRF in Scotland as a support worker for those newly diagnosed and their families. In addition, she is on the committee for the JDRF ball in Edinburgh.

Craig Beall - Exeter
Craig Beall’s laboratory is interested in the complex changes that occur in the brain in response to acute and recurrent hypoglycaemia, which is still a frequent concern for people with type 1 and advanced (insulin-treated) type 2 diabetes. The lab focuses on understanding how brain cells talk to each other during hypoglycaemia with the aim of developing treatments that prevent hypoglycaemia or that restore hypoglycaemia awareness in people when this is impaired.

David Fatscher - London
David’s teenage daughter Eliza was diagnosed with type 1 at the age of 12 so he has observed the challenges of adapting to a blood glucose management regime. David and his family have volunteered at JDRF and he sees his contribution to the SAC as an extension of that commitment. David leads a programme of standards development for sustainability and environmental management at the British Standards Institution. Shaping such solutions requires him to collaborate with subject-matter experts, which has proven to be good training for his SAC lay-member role.

Sarah Gatward - Guildford
Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes as a seven year-old in March 1972, Sarah has seen the huge benefit research has had on the treatment of the condition over the many years since diagnosis. As a lay member, she is passionate about supporting and promoting research that has the potential for improving the quality of life for those living with the condition. She is a reviewer for the Type 1 Resources website and works as Finance Director for the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre in Guildford.

Sara Hartnell - Cambridge
Sara is a Dietitian with 20 years of experience working with people with diabetes. She is an insulin pump educator at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge and manages a team of 20 dietitians working in the institute of Metabolic science. Sara’s main interests are in insulin pump therapy, continuous glucose monitoring and closed loop insulin delivery. She is part of Roman Hovorka’s Artificial pancreas research team at the University of Cambridge and is dedicated to improving access to new technology.

Sufyan Hussain - London
Sufyan is a Consultant Diabetes Physician in one of the leading services for type 1 diabetes at Guy’s and St Thomas Hospital and an Honorary Senior Lecturer at King’s College London. He has over 25 years personal experience of living with type 1 diabetes and is passionate about improving care for diabetes and has a particular interest in the application of technology to type 1 diabetes care. He is a member of the ABCD Diabetes Technology Network, NHSE London Diabetes Strategic Clinical Network and Parliamentary think tank for Diabetes.

Vicky McKechnie - London
Vicky is a Clinical Psychologist. She works as part of the type 1 diabetes multidisciplinary team at Charing Cross Hospital, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. Her role involves helping the team to be aware of and to address the psychological aspects of living with type 1 diabetes, and offering one-to-one psychological interventions for people who use the service. She also supports psychological therapies services in developing skills and expertise in working with people living with long-term health conditions, including type 1 diabetes, who experience anxiety and depression.

Nick Oliver - London
Nick is clinical lead for type 1 diabetes and diabetes technology at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. The multidisciplinary clinic has developed a Centre of Excellence for type 1 diabetes care and has established insulin pump, continuous glucose monitoring, including implanted devices, and intraperitoneal insulin delivery.Nick also leads a group with active research in diabetes technology areas including glucose control using closed loop systems (artificial pancreas), non- or minimally-invasive glucose sensing, decision support, diabetes prevention, and other areas where technology can be applied to diabetes.

Sara Richardson - Exeter
Sarah is a Senior Lecturer in Biomedical and Clinical Sciences at the University of Exeter who utilises unique cohorts of type 1 diabetes patient pancreas samples to develop a clearer understanding of the disease processes by which beta cells are targeted and destroyed. She has particular interests in the role that enteroviruses and anti-viral responses may play in the disease and how age of diagnosis may impact on diabetes. She is a passionate advocate of Team Science and enjoys working together with numerous national and international colleagues to better understand this disease.

Sandra Singleton - Blackpool
Sandra has worked as a children and young people’s diabetes specialist nurse for over 20 years and is the diabetes team leader in Blackpool teaching hospital. She is experienced in partnership working, resources development and research. She was the lead in the National Individualised Health Care Plan and the E-Learning School programme. She has presented at national meetings and conferences.

Christopher Walker - Bristol
Chris is a lay member of the SAC who represents the views of those aged between 18-25 with type 1 diabetes, having been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes age 19 whilst at university. Chris is interested in helping shape both research and policy discussions surrounding type 1 diabetes treatment and care, and is currently a trainee solicitor at UK law firm Burges Salmon.

Annette Wiles - West Sussex
Annette is a lay member of the SAC. Her son, Sam, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and underactive thyroid at the age of 9. Sam was born with a rare genetic skin disorder (EBS) meaning his skin blisters easily. With so much of type 1 care focused on technology that sticks to the skin, managing Sam’s health is particularly complex and she is grateful to leverage all the knowledge she has acquired in the service of the SAC and JDRF.. Annette is a Democratic Services officer in Local Government. She supports the decision-making process and make sure it is constitutional.

Susan Wong - Cardiff
Susan is Professor of Diabetes and Metabolism at Cardiff University and Honorary Consultant Physician in Diabetes at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff. She has carried out research in the immunology of type 1 diabetes, and has been involved in translational work in developing immunotherapy for type 1 diabetes. She also has many years of clinical experience and in recent years, she has been particularly involved in treatment and care of individuals with type 1 diabetes treated with continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion, as well as in structured education for people with type 1 diabetes.