Mervyn Singer

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Mervyn Singer

Singer 2MB BS, MD, FRCP(Lon), FRCP(Edin), FFICM

Professor of Intensive Care Medicine

University College London

Cruciform Building, Gower St, London WC1E 6BT, UK

Head, Research Department of Clinical Physiology, Division of Medicine

NIHR Senior Investigator 2009-2017




Address: University College London, Cruciform Building, Gower St, London WC1E 6BT, UK

Region: North Central Thames

Research type: Basic science / clinical

Research Interests:

  • Mechanisms of sepsis-induced multiple organ failure with particular emphasis on the role of mitochondrial dysfunction
  • Mechanisms of septic shock (and other shock states) with emphasis on the roles of nitric oxide, vasopressin, catecholamines and potassium channels
  • Management and diagnosis of infection (including infection control) in critical care
  • Haemodynamics including physiology and pathophysiology pertaining to shock states
  • Monitoring techniques to assess the macro- and microcirculation, and the adequacy of organ perfusion


Key Techniques: A variety of in vivo anaesthetized and awake short- and long-term lab models of critical illness (and recovery) offering fluid resuscitation, continuous BP and blood flow monitoring, echocardiography, metabolic monitoring, monitoring of tissue oxygenation, blood gases, myography, treadmill testing etc.. Lab techniques include in vitro/ex vivo mitochondrial respiration, FACS, confocal, etc..

Keywords: sepsis, MOF, mitochondria, infection, monitoring, shock, novel therapies

Funding: Wellcome Trust, MRC, European Union, Health Innovation Challenge Fund, Industry grants


Selected Publications

1)     Singer M et al. Continuous hemodynamic monitoring by esophageal Doppler. Crit Care Med 1989; 17:447-52

2)     Millar AB et al. Tumour necrosis factor in bronchopulmonary secretions of patients with adult respiratory distress syndrome. Lancet 1989; ii: 712-14

3)     Screaton GR et al. Hyperpyrexia and rhabdomyolysis after MDMA (“ecstasy”) abuse. Lancet 1992; 339:677-8

4)     Rosser DM et al. Oxygen tension in the bladder epithelium increases in both high and low output endotoxemic sepsis. J Appl Physiol 1995; 79:1878-82

5)     Carr C et al. Immediate postoperative enteral feeding is safe and effective in patients undergoing gastrointestinal resection. BMJ 1996; 312:869-71

6)     Sinclair S et al. Intraoperative intravascular volume optimisation and length of hospital stay after repair of proximal femoral fracture: randomised controlled trial. BMJ 1997; 315:909-12

7)     O’Brien AJ et al. Terlipressin therapy for norepinephrine-resistant septic shock Lancet 2002; 359:1209-10

8)     Brealey D et al. Association between mitochondrial dysfunction and severity and outcome of septic shock. Lancet 2002; 360:219-23

9)     Brealey D et al. Mitochondrial dysfunction in a long-term rodent model of sepsis and organ failure. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2004; 286: R491-7

10)  McKendry M et al. Randomised controlled trial assessing the impact of a nurse delivered, flow monitored protocol for optimisation of circulatory status after cardiac surgery. BMJ 2004; 329:258

11)  Singer M et al. Multiorgan failure is an adaptive, endocrine-mediated, metabolic response to overwhelming systemic inflammation. Lancet 2004; 364:545-8

12)  Singer M et al. Reversal of life-threatening, drug-related potassium-channel syndrome by glibenclamide. Lancet 2005; 365:1873-75

13)  Harvey S et al on behalf of the PAC-Man Study Collaboration. Assessment of the clinical effectiveness of pulmonary artery catheters in management of patients in intensive care (PAC-Man): a randomised controlled trial. Lancet 2005; 366:472-7

14)  Cepeda JA et al. Isolation of patients in single rooms or cohorts to reduce spread of MRSA in intensive-care units: prospective two-centre study. Lancet 2005; 365:295-304

15)  Dyson A et al. Tissue oxygen monitoring in rodent models of shock. Am J Physiol Heart Circul Physiol 2007; 293:H526-33

16)  Sprung CL, Annane D, Keh D, Moreno R., Singer M, et al for the Corticus Study Group. Hydrocortisone therapy for patients with septic shock. N Engl J Med 2008; 358:111-24

17)  Ackland GL et al. Cardioprotection, attenuated systemic inflammation, and survival benefit of b1-adrenoceptor blockade in severe sepsis in rats. Crit Care Med 2010;38:388-94

18)  Carré JE et al. Survival in critical illness is associated with early activation of mitochondrial biogenesis. Am J Resp Crit Care Med 2010; 182:745–751

19)  Recknagel P et al. Liver dysfunction and Phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase signaling in early sepsis: experimental studies in rodent models of peritonitis PLoSMed 2012; 9:e1001338

20)  Rudiger A et al. Early functional and transcriptomic changes in the myocardium predict outcome in a long-term rat model of sepsis. Clin Sci 2013; 124:391-401

21)  Morelli A et al. Heart rate control with esmolol in patients with septic shock: a randomized controlled trial JAMA 2013 (ePub)