Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition Research Group

The Department of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, based in the Royal Hospital for Children Glasgow, cares for roughly half of the paediatric population of Scotland.  Major clinical and research interests of the Department include inflammatory bowel disease, gastrointestinal microbiota, complex enteral and parenteral nutrition and the development of novel therapies for gastrointestinal disease.   Members of the team collaborate extensively with colleagues throughout Scotland, the United Kingdom and the rest of the world.   We have clinical research experience in industry-sponsored trials, collaborative multicentre studies and we also continue to develop our own investigator-led  research programme.   The department actively supports and encourages clinical training in all aspects of paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition including paediatric endoscopy, and offers research training with degree programmes to all levels including PhD.

Collaborative Study

Exploring the Role of Diet in the Management of Paediatric and Adult Crohn's Disease

Following seeding funding from the Glasgow Children's Hospital Charity, Professor Konstantinos Gerasimidis, Human Nutrition, School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing, together with NHS colleagues from The Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow (Dr Richard Hansen) and The Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh (Professor Richard Russell and Professor David Wilson) were successful in raising over £2M from the Crohn's Colitis Foundation, The JP Moulton and the Helmsley Charitable Trusts, to explore the role of diet in the management of paediatric and adult Crohn's disease.

In a series of well designed studies they aim to explore the role of diet in the management of paediatric and adult Crohn's disease and identify the dietary triggers of gut inflammation in Crohn's disease (also known as CD-Treat diet).   With collaborators from The BINGO Group, they will study the interactions between food and the gut microbiome in initiating immune response causing gut inflammation.


Research Team

Dr Richard Hansen

Dr Richard Hansen's main research interest is the gastrointestinal mucosal microbiota and its importance in paediatric disease, particularly inflammatory bowel disease.  He is particularly interested in the molecular characterisation of the microbiota and its subsequent modification for the purposes of therapeutic effect.  This theme of microbial therapeutics fits nicely into the concept of stratified medicine, since the microbiota is highly individualistic yet also modifiable.  Being a paediatrician, Dr Hansen is naturally interested in how the gut microbiota develops as the child grows and matures, particularly at the earliest stages of microbial colonisation.   This area of research is a natural extension of Dr Hansen's CSO-funded PhD studies during which he was the first to catalogue and publish the colonic microbiota in paediatric IBD at the onset of disease.


  • The paediatric gastrointestinal microbiota as a stratified medicine target for novel diagnostics and microbial intervention.   Hansen R (personal fellowship) 1/4/15 - 31/3/18.  £61,954, NHS Research Scotland.
  • STOP-COLITIS (faecal transplant in ulcerative colitis).   As a member of a UK-wide steering group 20/3/15 - 20/3/18.  £2,633,985, Joint MRC/NIHR Efficacy and Mechanisms Evaluation Committee
  • Novel management of Crohn's disease by dietary manipulation of the gut microbiome.  Gerasimidis K, Hansen R (PhD supervisors) 1/10/14 - 30/9/17.  £59,999, Glasgow Children's Hospital Charity
  • The colonic microbiota of de-novo paediatric Crohn's disease.  Hansen R, Hold GL, Russel RK, El-Omar EM. 1/4/11 - 31/3/12.  £11,120, NHS Grampian Endowments.
  • Is meconium sterile at birth?  A molecular assessment of an infant's first stool for the presence and composition of bacterial populations.  Hansen R, Scott KP, Hold Gl.   1/11/10 - 31/10/11. £10,719, NHS Grampian, Neonatal Endowments.
  • The role of non-pylori Helicobacter in paediatric inflammatory bowel disease.  Hansen R (persona PhD fellowship); Supervisors : Hold GL, El-Omar EM.  1/3/09 - 29/2/12.  £182,235, Scottish Executive Health Department - Chief Scientist Office.

Dr Diana Flynn

Dr Andrew Barclay

Dr Rachel Taylor