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Hugh Markus

College positions:
Professorial Fellow
Neurology, Stroke Medicine
Department of Clinical Neurosciences
Contact details:

Professor Hugh Markus

Hugh Markus was appointed Professor of Stroke Medicine at the University of Cambridge and Honorary Consultant Neurologist at Cambridge University Hospitals Trust in 2013. He was an undergraduate at Cambridge and Oxford universities before training in Medicine and Neurology in Oxford, Nottingham, and London.

Before his current appointment, Hugh was Professor of Neurology and Head of the Stroke and Dementia Research Institute at St George’s, University of London. He is an academic medic who divides his time 50:50 between caring for stroke patients and research and teaching.

Professor Markus’ research interests focus on what causes stroke and ways to develop better treatment approaches. He has a particular interest in cerebral small vessel disease, in which the small blood vessel in the brain become abnormal and which creates a quarter of all strokes, and is the most common cause of vascular dementia. Collaborating with groups worldwide, he uses genetic techniques to understand the pathogenesis of stroke and to identify novel pathways which can be therapeutically targeted. He uses imaging techniques (particularly MRI and positron emission tomography) to better understand how cerebral small vessel disease damages the brain, and to provide a readout to assess the effectiveness of new treatment approaches in clinical trials.

He has held a number of leadership roles in the NIHR Clinical Research Network and Stroke Nationally and Internationally. He is editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Stroke and is on the executive committee of the World Stroke Organisation.

Select publications

  • Traylor M, Persyn E, Tomppo L, … Wardlaw J, Lewis CM, Markus HS. Genetic basis of lacunar stroke: a pooled analysis of individual patient data and genome-wide association studies. Lancet Neurol. 2021;20:351-361
  • Walsh J, Tozer DJ, Sari H, Hong YT, Drazyk A, Williams G, Shah NJ, O’Brien JT, Aigbirhio FI, Rosenberg G, Fryer TD, Markus HS. Microglial activation and blood-brain barrier permeability in cerebral small vessel disease. Brain. 2021 Jun 22;144(5):1361-1371
  • Persyn E, Hanscombe KB, Howson JMM, Lewis CM, Traylor M, Markus HS. Genome-wide association study of MRI markers of cerebral small vessel disease in 42,310 participants. Nat Commun. 2020 May 1;11(1):2175.
  • Malik R, Chauhan G, Traylor M, … Markus HS, Howson JMM, Kamatani Y, Debette S, Dichgans M*; MEGASTROKE Consortium:. Multiancestry genome-wide association study of 520,000 subjects identifies 32 loci associated with stroke and stroke subtypes. Nat Genet. 2018 Apr;50(4):524-537
  • Larsson SC, Traylor M, Malik R, Dichgans M, Burgess S, Markus HS; CoSTREAM Consortium, on behalf of the International Genomics of Alzheimer’s Project. Modifiable pathways in Alzheimer’s disease: Mendelian randomisation analysis. BMJ. 2017 Dec 6;359:j5375
  • Markus HS, Hayter E, Levi C, Feldman A, Venables G, Norris J. The CADISS trial investigators. Antiplatelet treatment compared with anticoagulation treatment for cervical artery dissection (CADISS): a randomised trial. Lancet Neurol. 2015 Feb 11. pii: S1474-4422(15)70018-9. (PI and corresponding author)
  • Traylor M, Farrall M, .. Meschia JF, Stefansson K, Dichgans M, Markus HS; International Stroke Genetics Consortium. Genetic risk factors for ischaemic stroke and its subtypes (the METASTROKE collaboration): a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies. Lancet Neurol. 2012;11:951-62
  • International Stroke Genetics Consortium (ISGC); Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium 2 (WTCCC2), Bellenguez C, Bevan S, Gschwendtner A, .. Dichgans M, Donnelly P, Markus HS. Genome-wide association study identifies a variant in HDAC9 associated with large vessel ischemic stroke. Nat Genet. 2012;44:328-33.

Select awards

  • Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences
  • NINR Senior Investigator

Further links