• 9076 Citations
  • 44 h-Index
1991 …2018
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Personal profile


Holding a Chair in Population Health Science, Blair is an academic general practitioner, currently also practising clinically as a Consultant in Pain Medicine, Ninewells Hospital.  Graduating at the Universities of Glasgow (MBChB, 1987) and Aberdeen (MEd Distinction 1998; MD 2000), he held an NHS Primary Care Career Scientist Award (2000 to 2005) and was Professor Primary Care Medicine at the University of Aberdeen until 2011.  He is Clinical Co-director of Tayside Clinical Trials Unit.

His research on chronic pain and neuropathic pain has been published widely, specifically studying the epidemiology, primary care management and self-management.  He is a Chief Investigator on Generation Scotland, a major programme for studying genetics and health, with over 30,000 volunteer participants.  He is now actively exploring the opportunities that this and other collaborations bring to researching the biological mechanisms of chronic pain, from the laboratory to the community.  He has established the Chronic Pain Research Group at the University of Dundee, based in the Division of Population Health and Genomics.

He is Past Chair of the International Association for the Study of Pain Neuropathic Pain Special Interest Group (NeuPSIG).  He was formerly Treasurer of the Society for Academic Primary Care, and sat on the Editorial Board of the British Journal of General Practice, both from 1997 to 2007.  He chaired the NHS Scotland / SGHD Chronic Pain Steering Group until June 2011, and established its Research Subgroup and the Scottish Pain Research Community (SPaRC).  He was appointed to his current post in August 2011.

Blair was appointed on 1 May 2014 to the post of Lead Clinician for Chronic Pain working with the Scottish Government, and is Specialty Adviser to the Chief Medical Officer.  He aims to facilitate improvement in the management of pain, in an evidence-based yet practical way.

In 2017, Blair received the award for Best Postgraduate Supervisor from the Dundee University Students' Association.  In 2018, he was awarded the British Pain Society Medal and ANnual Lecture, for "outstanding contribution to the field of pain".

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Medicine, University of Aberdeen

Master of Education, University of Aberdeen

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, University of Glasgow

External positions

National Lead Clinician for Chronic Pain, Scottish Government

1 Apr 2014 → …

Consultant in Pain Medicine, NHS Tayside

1 Apr 2013 → …


  • R Medicine (General)
  • Chronic pain
  • Primary Care Medicine
  • RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
  • Epidemiology
  • Genetic epidemiology

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 1991 2018

2 Citations

A Genome-Wide Association Study Finds Genetic Associations with Broadly-Defined Headache in UK Biobank (N = 223,773)

Meng, W., Adams, M. J., Hebert, H. L., Deary, I. J., McIntosh, A. M. & Smith, B. H., Feb 2018, In : EBioMedicine. 28, p. 180-186 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Genome-Wide Association Study
Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
2 Citations

Association of opioid prescribing practices with chronic pain and benzodiazepine co-prescription: a primary care data linkage study

Torrance, N., Mansoor, R., Wang, H., Gilbert, S., Macfarlane, G. J., Serpell, M., Baldacchino, A., Hales, T. G., Donnan, P., Wyper, G., Smith, B. H. & Colvin, L., Jun 2018, In : British Journal of Anaesthesia. 120, 6, p. 1345-1355 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Information Storage and Retrieval
Chronic Pain
Opioid Analgesics
1 Citations

Chronic pain in families: A cross-sectional study of shared social, behavioural, and environmental influences

Campbell, P., Jordan, K. P., Smith, B., Generation Scotland & Dunn, K. M., 1 Jan 2018, In : Pain. 159, 1, p. 41-47 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Chronic Pain
Cross-Sectional Studies
Family Health
Logistic Models
4 Citations

Cohort Profile: Genetics of Diabetes Audit and Research in Tayside Scotland (GoDARTS)

Hébert, H. L., Shepherd, B., Milburn, K., Veluchamy, A., Meng, W., Carr, F., Donnelly, L. A., Tavendale, R., Leese, G., Colhoun, H. M., Dow, E., Morris, A. D., Doney, A. S., Lang, C. C., Pearson, E. R., Smith, B. H. & Palmer, C. N. A., 1 Apr 2018, In : International Journal of Epidemiology. 47, 2, p. 380-381j 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

Common and Rare Coding Genetic Variation Underlying the Electrocardiographic PR Interval

Lin, H., van Setten, J., Smith, A. V., Bihlmeyer, N. A., Warren, H. R., Brody, J. A., Radmanesh, F., Hall, L., Grarup, N., Müller-Nurasyid, M., Boutin, T., Verweij, N., Lin, H. J., Li-Gao, R., van den Berg, M. E., Marten, J., Weiss, S., Prins, B. P., Haessler, J., Lyytikäinen, L-P. & 30 othersMei, H., Harris, T. B., Launer, L. J., Li, M., Alonso, A., Soliman, E. Z., Connell, J. M., Huang, P. L., Weng, L-C., Jameson, H. S., Hucker, W., Hanley, A., Tucker, N. R., Chen, Y-D. I., Bis, J. C., Rice, K. M., Sitlani, C. M., Kors, J. A., Xie, Z., Wen, C., Magnani, J. W., Nelson, C. P., Kanters, J. K., Sinner, M. F., Strauch, K., Peters, A., Waldenberger, M., Meitinger, T., Bork-Jensen, J. & Smith, B. H., May 2018, In : Circulation: Genomic and Precision Medicine. 11, 5, 30 p., e002037.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Genetic Loci
Sinoatrial Node
Genome-Wide Association Study


Best Postgraduate Supervisor

Blair Smith (Recipient), Jun 2017

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)


Press / Media

Inspiring teacher honoured with Student-led Teaching Award

Blair Smith


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Teaching

How genetics can uncover links in chronic pain and other conditions

Blair Smith


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Research

Scotland's new lead for chronic pain

Blair Smith


1 item of media coverage

Press/Media: Other


Comorbid opioid dependence and chronic pain: Clinical implications

Author: Higgins, C., 2018

Supervisor: Matthews, K. (Supervisor) & Smith, B. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy

Factors associated with co-prescription of opioids and gabapentinoids

Author: Wu, S., 2017

Supervisor: Smith, B. (Supervisor), Watson, J. (Supervisor) & Meng, W. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science


Turning data into information: The use of new technologies to improve the delivery of healthcare for people with diabetes

Author: Conway, N. T., 2017

Supervisor: Wake, D. (Supervisor) & Smith, B. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Medicine