Professor William Cookson

Faculty of Medicine, National Heart & Lung Institute
Imperial College London

William Cookson is Professor of Genomic Medicine at Imperial College London and Head of Respiratory Sciences for the College. He is Head of the Asmarley Centre for Genomic Medicine at the National Heart and Lung Institute. He won a Joint Wellcome Senior Investigator Award with Professor Miriam Moffatt in 2011, and was elected to the College of NIHR Senior Investigators in 2013.

Professor Cookson initially trained as a respiratory physician, before receiving a D.Phil. in human genetics at Oxford in 1994. He was a Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Oxford between 1998 and 2004. Over the past twenty-five years he and Miriam Moffatt have developed a successful research group devoted to understanding the genetic causes of asthma.

In addition the group are developing large-scale genomic studies of lung cancer, in collaboration with G.M. Lathrop at McGill Genome Centre in Canada. They are currently sequencing multiple lung cancers to identify the full spectrum of mutations driving the disease. At the same time the group are measuring global gene expression to define new therapeutic targets.