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CL in Endocrinology and Diabetes Mellitus

Dr Catriona Hilton


I have pursued an academic training path (with a few meanders).

I first got a taste for research during my medical degree at Imperial College London when I did an intercalated BSc with a three-month research project.

I then undertook an Academic Foundation Programme (AFP). This was followed by an Academic Clinical Fellowship (ACF), during which I secured funding for a DPhil which I completed between ST2 and ST3.

I then spent a couple of years focussing on pure clinical training in Endocrinology and Diabetes before applying for an NIHR Clinical Lecturer position. 

My research interest is human body fat distribution. During my DPhil I investigated the role of microRNAs in determining human body fat distribution. I am now exploring the role of iron metabolism in adipose tissue metabolism and body fat distribution. 


I alternate between six-month blocks of clinical training and research time, which allows me to concentrate on both fully while I am doing them. 

During the protected research time I have been able to explore and develop my own research interests. I work as a team with other researchers, which helps to maintain momentum while I am on a clinical placement. 

Having more autonomy over my time has also allowed me to become more involved with teaching and lecturing, which is hugely rewarding. In addition, I am currently preparing a clinical handbook on lipid medicine for publication. 

I work less than full-time and balancing the demands of research, clinical training and family life is a constant juggling act. However, the hard work is rewarded with a career that is stimulating, varied and always interesting. 


I moved to Oxford to take up an Academic Clinical Fellowship (ACF) more than a decade ago. The research in Oxford is world-class and there are so many opportunities for collaboration between departments and disciplines. The clinical training has also been excellent. I have found both my academic and clinical supervisors extremely supportive. On a personal level, I quickly fell in love with the city of Oxford and have made a home here.


May 2023