Professor Geoffrey Pilkington

Professor Geoffrey J Pilkington BSc PhD CBiol FSB FRCPath


Present Appointment

  • Professor of Cellular and Molecular Neuro-oncology, School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences
  • Head of Cellular and Molecular Medicine Research Division, Institute of Biomedical and Biomolecular Sciences

Previous Appointments

  • Professor of Experimental Neuro-oncology, King’s College London


  • BSc
  • PhD
  • CBiol
  • FSB
  • FRCPath

Society Memberships

  • President of the British Neuro-oncology Society
  • Fellow, Royal College of Pathologists (FRCPath)
  • Fellow, Society of Biology (CBiol FBS)
  • Fellow, Royal Society of Medicine
  • Member, European Association of Neuro-oncology
  • Member, Society for Neuro-oncology (USA)
  • Member, International Glioma Invasion Forum
  • Member, British Neuropathological Society
  • Member, International Society of Neuropathology
  • Member, European Association for Cancer Research
  • Member, British Neuroscience Association

Research Interests

  • Focuses on the development of models for the study of intrinsic brain tumours, elucidation of the mechanisms underlying diffuse local invasive behaviour in glioma and development of novel strategies for mitochondrial mediation of apoptosis in glioma.

Scientific Advisor

  • Brain Tumour UK
  • Brainstrust
  • Ali’s Dream & Charlie’s Challenge

Doctorate Supervision and Examination

  • Supervisor of 26 PhD candidates (at University of London, King’s College, London and University of Portsmouth)
  • Examiner of 31 PhD/MD candidates (at University of Cambridge, University of Nottingham, University of London, University of Sheffield, Queen’s University of Belfast, University of Glasgow, University of Edinburgh, the Open University, King’s College London, Imperial College London, Queen Mary London, University College London, the Peninsula Medical School,  University of Portsmouth, University of Lublijana, Slovenia, University of Bergen Norway, University of Gent Belgium, Dublin City University).

Journal Refereeing and Review of Grant Applications

  • Reviewer of articles for 53 different Scientific/Medical Journals. Editorial Board member of Anticancer Research, Oncology and Radiology and the Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research
  • Reviewer for 25 UK grant giving bodies and 8 overseas bodies (The United States/Israel Binational Science Foundation, The Italian Association for Cancer Research (AIRC), the Cancer Society of New Zealand, The Royal Society of New Zealand, The Fonds National de la Recherche (CORE) Luxembourg, the Medical Research Council of South Africa, the New Zealand Neurological Foundation and the Israel Science Foundation). Also a member of the European Science Foundation (ESF) Reviewer’s Panel (2009-2012)

Geoff has spent his entire career in brain tumour research, having started work on chemical neuro-carcinogenesis where he studied brain cancer stem cells and brain tumour development at the Middlesex Hospital Medical School in the early 1970s and subsequently spent 23 years at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College, London, latterly as Professor of Experimental Neuro-oncology. In 2003 he moved to the School of Pharmacy & Biomedical Sciences, University of Portsmouth, as Professor of Cellular & Molecular Neuro-oncology & Director of Research. Over the years the research focus of his group has been development of models for the study of intrinsic brain tumours, elucidation of the mechanisms underlying diffuse local invasive behaviour in glioma and development of novel strategies for mitochondrial mediation of apoptosis in glioma.

Over the years Geoff has published numerous papers on the results of his research on human glioma and has developed various “all human” three-dimensional in vitro models to study brain tumour invasion and the blood-brain barrier. At the University of Portsmouth he has established an excellent suite of laboratories with two tissue culture laboratories and a host of state-of-the-art equipment including those to enable various assays including flow cytometry, cellular oxygen utilisation measurement, cell viability, apoptosis & proliferation assay and RT-PCR, to name a few. He has also established a sophisticated microscope imaging suite which includes atomic force microscopy, laser capture micro-dissection and live cell microscopy etc.

He was instrumental in the formation of Brain Tumour UK and remains as advisor to the charity. He is also advisor to Brainstrust Ali’s Dream & Charlie’s Challenge as well as formerly holding membership of the Samantha Dickson Brain Tumour Trust Scientific & Medical Advisory Board. He also works closely with Hammer Out and the Brain Tumour Research Campaign and is highly supportive of the new Brain Tumour Research consortium of brain tumour charities. He is also a regular attendee at the quarterly All Party Parliamentary Group meetings on Brain tumours at Westminster. He lives on the Isle of Wight and commutes daily across the Solent to his Portsmouth laboratories. In his spare time he lists his major interests as: rugby union, cricket, real ales and the Greek Islands.

Contact Details