Professor Calum Semple has studied severe virus disease outbreaks since 1989 in the fields of diagnostics, clinical characterization and clinical trials. He was a founder member of ISARIC. He has led studies of COVID-19, MERS, Monkeypox, Ebola (EVD and Survivors), Influenza and Bronchiolitis, at times field-deployed in austere circumstances.
Professor Semple came to Liverpool in 1999 after training in London and Oxford. His doctoral research was in clinical virology and funded by an MRC - Burroughs Wellcome Industrial Fellowship. He was converted to paediatrics by inspiring clinical teachers at Oxford and later persuaded to sub-specialise with the renowned respiratory team at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.
An NIHR National Clinician Scientist Award in 2002 allowed Calum to develop his principal research interest in bronchiolitis and influenza, the two most important causes of Severe Acute Respiratory Infections (SARI) in children and adults.
He was jointly appointed Senior Clinical Lecturer in Child Health at University of Liverpool with tenure and Consultant in Paediatric Respiratory Medicine at Alder Hey Children's Hospital in 2006. His personal chair in Child Health and Outbreak Medicine was awarded in December 2017.
He is Chief Investigator for BESS, FLU-CATs, WHO ISARIC Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK (CCP-UK), and CO-CIN. CCP-UK and CO-CIN are pandemic response studies that have been activated for the covid-19 outbreak.
BESS - the Bronchiolitis Endotracheal Surfactant Study in a multinational randomised controlled trial of Endotracheal Surfactant administered to infants with life-threatening Bronchiolitis funded by the NIHR EME programme.
He is co-investigator on ARCHIE (2014-) and Emergency Evaluation of Convalescent Plasma for Ebola Viral Disease (EVD) in Guinea "Ebola-Tx" (2014-17). Calum was a co-investigator on the FLU-CIN and MOSAIC studies that characterized in near real-time the clinical and immunological response to Influenza A/H1N1pdm2009 infection during the pandemic.
Calum is the Senior Clinical Editor of the journal Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses. He is a member of NERVTAG is an expert committee of the Department of Health (DH), that advises the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and, through the CMO, ministers, DH and other Government departments on New and Emerging Respiratory Viral Threats.
He is a Senior Government Clinical Advisor on the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (COVID-19 response) and a former member of the WHO Scientific Technical Advisory Committee for Ebola Emergencies (STAC-EE) and UK Pandemic Flu group.
In 2016 he and his team were awarded the Queen’s Ebola Medal for Service in West Africa 2014-16 and in 2019 he received a Commonwealth Association Award for subsequent work with Ebola survivors in Sierra Leone.
He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen’s Birthday honours list 2020 for his role in the COVID-19 response.
Calum provides a tertiary paediatric respiratory outpatient clinic and runs the regional paediatric bronchoscopy service with Professor Kevin Southern and colleagues at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.
Calum volunteered at the London 2012 Olympic Games where he led the shooting field of play medical team at the Royal Artillery Barracks. He is a volunteer medical officer to the Cheshire, Merseyside and North West Counties Amateur Boxing Association.
Academic Secretary: Ms Cara Donegan firstname.lastname@example.org
Clinical Secretary: Mrs Jessica Carter +44 (0) 151 252 5777
Prizes or Honours
- Queen's Ebola Medal for Service in West Africa (Health Research Activities) (Her Majesty's Government, 2016)
- Letter from Prime Minister (Olympic Games Health Threat Response) (Prime Minister HMG UK, 2012)
- Letter from Chief Medical Officer (Pandemic Influenza Research Response) (Chief Medical Officer, 2011)
- Letter to VC from Director General NHS R&D and Chair of SAGE (Department of Health, HMG UK, 2009)
- Letter from Secretary of State (Pandemic Influenza Research Response) (Secretary of State for Health, 2009)
- American Thoracic Society International Trainee Award (American Thoracic Society, 2006)