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Adrian Shepherd: Summary


Positions: Reader in Computational Biology, ISMB and Birkbeck, University of London; Honorary Research Associate, UCL

Research areas: Computational immunology, computational virology and biomedical text mining (see the Shepherd Group website for more information)

Teaching: Director of the joint Birkbeck/UCL MSc Bioinformatics with Systems Biology course and a PI on the SysMIC project (see this page for more information)




Adrian arrived at his current academic position via an unusually circuitous route. With a first degree in History of Art and having spent six years working outside academia (as Information Officer for a welfare rights charity and as a journalist), he started a Masters in Computer Science at UCL in 1991. This included a module on neural computing, from which began a continuing interest in machine learning.

A PhD in Neural Computing at UCL followed, after which he joined Prof. Janet Thornton's group to work on protein structure prediction. After a further spell at UCL working on the CATH database for Prof. Christine Orengo, Adrian joined Birkbeck as a Lecturer in Bioinformatics in 2002. He became a Senior Lecturer in Computational Biology in the Department of Biological Sciences in 2009 and a Reader in Computational Biology in 2014.

Since 2006, when he became a founding member of the ImmunoGrid Consortium, a major focus for his research has been immunoinformatics. He was a "named expert" contributing to the development of the Virtual Physiological Human Roadmap (see Seeding the EuroPhysiome: A Roadmap to the Virtual Physiological Human).

Currently his research group is working on immune responses to several viruses that have a major global impact on human health (influenza A, HIV, hepatitis B virus, herpes simplex virus) and immune responses to protein therapeutics (notably replacement factor VIII used in the treatment of haemophilia A). He also retains an interest in more general computational methods relevant to the field (notably biomedical text mining and data visualisation).




  • Reader in Computational Biology, Department of Biological Sciences, Birkbeck (from Oct 2014)
  • Honorary Research Associate, Research Department of Structural & Molecular Biology, UCL (from May 2008)
  • Senior Lecturer in Computational Biology, Department of Biological Sciences, Birkbeck (Oct 2009 to Oct 2014)
  • Lecturer in Bioinformatics, School of Crystallography, Birkbeck (2002 to Oct 2009)
  • Senior Research Fellow with Prof. Christine Orengo (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, UCL) and Dr Nigel Martin (Computer Science, Birkbeck) (1999-2002)
  • Research Fellow with Prof. Janet Thornton (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, UCL) and Dr Denise Gorse (Computer Science, UCL) (1996-9)



  • Professional Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education, Institute of Education (2005)
  • PhD in Neural Computing, UCL (1995)
  • MSc Computer Science, UCL (1992)
  • BA (Hons.) History of Art, UEA (1984).