College of Medicine & Veterinary Medicine

MRC appointment for college head

Professor Sir John Savill, head of the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, is to become chief executive of the Medical Research Council

In taking up the position at the Medical Research Council (MRC), he will set aside NHS responsibilities.

He will continue to head up the University’s College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine.

I am thrilled to be joining the MRC at a time when there are such bright prospects for the UK to play a leading role in the international effort to beat disease through interdisciplinary discovery science. By retaining a University base, I will remain grounded in the realities of medical research in which partnerships with charities, industry, patients and public are so important in developing research and research leaders for the future.

Professor Sir John SavillHead of the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine


The MRC appointment was announced today by Vince Cable, the Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills.

Professor Sir John Savill will take up the post from October 1st for a three-year period, succeeding Sir Leszek Borysiewicz.

New Appointments

During this period, Professor Jonathan Seckl, director of research for the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, will take on a role as executive dean for the College.

This will include working on financial and academic planning.

Professor John Iredale, head of the centre for inflammation research, will also take on a three-year role as Dean of Clinical Medicine at the College.

This will include working in partnership with NHS Lothian and representing the College on Scotland's Board for Academic Medicine and the UK Medical Schools Council.

Professor Sir John Savill

Professor Sir John Savill has held the role of Vice-Principal and Head of the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine at the University since 2002.

This followed on from becoming Professor of Medicine in 1998 at the University, where he was also the first director of the University’s MRC Centre for Inflammation Research.

He was knighted in the 2008 New Year’s Honours List for services to clinical science.

Over the last two years NHS roles have included serving as Chief Scientist for the Scottish Government, serving as a non-executive Director of NHS Lothian and working as a consultant in acute medicine.