McCrimmon, Rory


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1991 …2022

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Personal profile


Rory McCrimmon trained at the University of Edinburgh and completed his clinical and speciality training in the South-East of Scotland before becoming an NHS Consultant Physician in Diabetes and Endocrinology at University Hospital Aintree, Liverpool, in 2000. In 2002, he joined the faculty at Yale University, Connecticut, to investigate why people with type 1 and 2 diabetes are very prone to developing low glucose (Hypoglycaemia). He returned to Scotland in 2009 to establish his laboratory at the University of Dundee, where he is currently Dean of Medicine, Professor of Experimental Diabetes and Metabolism and Honorary Consultant. He was awarded the 2015 RD Lawrence Lecture by Diabetes UK for his research in Hypoglycaemia, and Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2020.

Prof McCrimmon is currently  Lead Clinician for the Scottish Diabetes Research Network (SDRN), which provides the necessary infrastructure to co-ordinate and enable academic and commercial research throughout Scotland. The SDRN hosts a National Research Register of over 11,000 subjects with diabetes pre-consented to be contacted about clinical trials. The register is directly linked to SCI-diabetes, which contains secure clinical and biochemical data on over 350,000 people with diabetes in Scotland.

Prof McCrimmon serves on Editorial Boards of Diabetologia and Diabetes. He is a panel member for: Medical Research Council Population and Systems Medicine Board, Diabetes UK, Clinical Studies Group Management Committee; Diabetes UK, Intermediate Clinical Fellowships Panel; Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation PEAK Programme; Panel member, International Hypoglycaemia Study Group.



The focus of my research programme has been to define the fundamental mechanisms by which the brain detects low glucose levels (hypoglycaemia) and how these mechanisms are disrupted in type 1 diabetes in response to repeated episodes of hypoglycaemia. Key findings include a series of papers establishing key roles for AMP-activated protein kinase and the ATP-sensitive potassium channel in the detection of hypoglycaemia by the brain. I also have an interest clinical trials in diabetes and was appointed by interview by the Chief Scientist Office Scotland as Diabetes Champion. In this role I lead the £1.8M funded Scottish Diabetes Research Network (SDRN), comprising clinicians and research nurses in all major centres in Scotland and tasked with enabling high quality clinical research across the country. Unique to the SDRN, we also support the SDRN Epidemiology subgroup that has used the Sci-Diabetes informatics platform to produce a number of high impact publications.  I was UK Chief Investigator for the Lixilan-O trial, VERTIS-CV, PIONEER 6, European Chief Investigator for SUSTAIN-8, on the steering committee for DiRECT and writing groups for Lixilan-O, Lixilan-L and Tandem3.


Primary teaching experience is in academic mentoring and supervision of clinicians, post-graduates and undergraduate students. In this capacity, I have served as Programme Lead for the Academic Foundation Doctors in the Eastern Deanery, been a member of the Scottish Translational Medicine Training Initiative, and a member of the Medical Research Council Clinical Fellowship Training and Career Development Awards panel. In addition, I have co-written the Chapter on Diabetes in Davidson’s Principles and Practice of Medicine (Editions 22 and 23), a textbook that has been read by over 2 million medical students since its first edition. As Dean I jointly Chair the new ScotGEM post-graduate Entry Medical Programme with Prof David Crossman, Dean of Medicine, St Andrew’s Univerity .

Research interests

Agreed Future Lectures


  • "Cellular Consequences of Hypoglycemia", at the 100th anniversary of the "Discovery of Insulin: A Scientific Celebration" meeting, Toronto, April 15-17, 2021.
  • Obstacles and Barriers to Treatment and Prevention of Impaired Awareness of Hypoglycemia (IAH) and Counter-Regulatory Responses in Patients with Type 1 Diabetes, NDDK, Washington, Bethesda, USA October, 2021
  • Cardiovascular Seminar Series, Division of Cardiovascular Sciences, University of Manchester, TBC

International Lectures

  • Impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia: Rememberance of things past. Nov 7, 2020, European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology virtual conference
  • Let’s talk hypoglycemia: an under-recognized unmet need in people on basal insulin, September 2020, Sanofi, European Association for the Study of Diabetes Virtual Conference
  • IHSG Symposium: The clinical impact of hypoglycaemia, September 2020, European Association for the Study of Diabetes Virtual Conference
  • SUSTAIN clinical programme, Efficacy of once-weekly semaglutide in the landscape of diabetes care, September 2020, BAMEAC GLP-1 Summit 2020 Webinar, Semaglutide: new kids on the block,
  • Impact of CVOTs in clinical decision making, September 2020, BAMEAC GLP-1 Summit 2020 Webinar, GLP-1 receptor agonists in cardiometabolic care,
  • Integrating once-weekly and oral semaglutide into current clinical practice, September 2020, Virtual GSEM, GLP-1 Diabetes,
  • Central Mechanisms of Hypoglycemia Awareness,June 2020, American Diabetes Association
  • Characteristics of US patients with type 2 diabetes prescribed GLP-1RA + SGLT-2i in combination during 2018, June 2020, American Diabetes Association
  • Niall O'Meara lecture - Irish Endocrine Society Lecture, Jan 2020 The Royal College of Physicians in Dublin
  • S SUSTAIN 8: Outcomes and Implications. Dec 2019. International Diabetes Federation, South Korea
  • GLT2 inhibitors for type 1 diabetes: clinical implications Sep 2019. European Association for the Study of Diabetes Barcelona, Spain
  • Mechanisms of hypoglycaemia unawareness Sep 2019. European Association for the Study of Diabetes Barcelona, Spain
  • Bringing (a little more) light to the dark side of insulin 14th Mar 2019, Yale University Scholars Day, New Haven, USA
  • Impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia: Causes and Consequences 21st Nov 2018, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
  • The future never looked so Bright: When medicine meets technology. DCV Forum 26/27th October 2018, Paris, France
  • A combination approach: Targeting the right patients. 1st Oct 2018, European Association for the Study of Diabetes, Berlin, Germany
  • Unified outcomes in diabetes management. European Diabetes Forum 30th Sept 2018, Berlin, Germany
  • Hypoglycaemia: Forget about it! May 2018, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • What do clinicians need to know about hypoglycaemia? Dec 2017 Meet the expert. International Diabetes Federation, Abu Dhabi, UAE
  • Impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia: New discoveries and treatments. Sept 2017 European Association for the Study of Diabetes, Lisbon, Portugal
  • Clinical Inertia: Lessons from Scotland. Sept 2016, European Association for the Study of Diabetes Munich, Germany
  • Exercise in Type 1 Diabetes: Sep 2016, European Association for the Study of Diabetes Munich, Germany
    Physiology of Exercise in Type 1 Diabetes. Apr 2016 Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation PEAK program, Boston, US
  • Impaired hypoglycaemia awareness: The habit of a lifetime. Feb 2016, Steno Diabetes Centre, Denmark
  • Impaired hypoglycaemia awareness: The habit of a lifetime. Oct 2015, International Society of Paediatric and Adolescent Diabetes, Brisbane, Australia
  • Cerebral adaption to recurrent hypoglycaemia. Mar 2015 Levine Symposium, San Diego, USA
  • The Scylla and Charybdis of glucose control in Type 1 Diabetes. Aug 2014 Norwegian Diabetes Meeting, Oslo
  • Hypoglycaemia: The study of stress, starvation and tolerance. Jan 2014, 3U Meeting, Dublin
  • Diabetes and Dementia. Dec 2013 International Diabetes Federation, Melbourne, Australia
  • The highs and lows of metabolic stress in type 1 diabetes. Oct 2013 International Society of Paediatric and Adolescent Diabetes, Gothenberg, Sweden
  • Another piece of the jigsaw: How the brain regulates pancreatic endocrine function. Dec 2012 International Society of Paediatric and Adolescent Diabetes conference, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Hypoglycaemia Tolerance: An adaptive response to repeated hypoglycaemia. Sep 2012 National Diabetes Symposium, Helsinki, Finland
  • Hypoglycaemia and the brain: does age play and important role. Aug 2012 Lilly peaks and Valleys meeting, Santiago, Chile
  • Hypoglycaemia and the brain: does age play and important role. May 2012 Lilly peaks and Valleys meeting, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Hypoglycaemia and the brain: Does age play and important role. Apr 2012 Lilly peaks and Valleys meeting, Amsterdam, Holland
  • Mechanisms of hypoglycaemia sensing. Sept 2011 Diabetes Dialogue, Barcelona, Spain
  • Central regulation of glucose homeostasis Oct 2010, FASEB, Kyoto, Japan
  • Mechanisms Underlying Hypoglycemia Unawareness, Aug 2016 International Diabetes Federation, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Mechanisms of Neuronal Glucose-Sensing, Jun 2016, American Diabetes Association Meeting, Washington, USA
  • Role for AMP Kinase in Hypoglycemia Sensing. Se 2007 Hypoglycemia Congress, Perugia, Italy
  • The BB Rat Turns Thirty: Lessons and Future Directions. Oct 2004, Ottowa, Canada

National Lectures

  • Clinical Management of Hypoglycaemia, RCPE Symposium on Diabetes and Endocrinology, Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, Oct 2020
  • Hypoglycaemia; the good, the bad and the ugly, University of Glasgow Guest Lecture Series, Oct 26, 2020
  • Hypoglycaemia: A force of habit. Dec 2016 University of Exeter
  • Impaired hypoglycaemia awareness. Nov 2015 National Paediatric and Adolescent Diabetes Group, Birmingham
  • The Sci is the limit. British Hypertension Society. Sept 2015 Stafford-on-Avon
  • Old habits are hard to break: Lessons from the study of hypoglycaemia. March 2015 RD Lawrence Lecture, Diabetes UK, London, (Plenary Lecture)
  • Inflammation and glucose sensing. March 2015 BHF Queen Margaret Institute, Edinburgh University
  • The Unaware Neuron. May 2014 Institute if Metabolic Science, Aberdeen University,
  • Getting excited about blood sugar: The brain and blood glucose control. April 2014 British Endocrine Society, Liverpool
  • Hypoglycaemia Tolerance: An adaptive response to repeated hypoglycaemia. April 2014 Bristol University
  • Hypoglycaemia: The study of stress, starvation and tolerance. March 2014 Scottish Study Group, Dunblane
  • Hypoglycaemia: The study of stress, starvation and tolerance. March 2014 Diabetes UK, Liverpool
  • Pre-conditioning and Hypoglycaemia. April 2014 University of Manchester
  • Stress, starvation and Hypoglycaemia. March 2013 Institute of Metabolic Research, Cambridge University
  • Central Mechanisms of hypoglycaemia awareness, March 2012 Diabetes UK Conference
  • Hypoglycaemia in type 1 diabetes and the development of hypoglycaemia tolerance. Feb 2012 Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism
  • Hypoglycaemia Tolerance. Nov 2010 Queens Medical Research Institute, Edinburgh
  • Hypo or not to hypo, that is the question? Nov 2010 Scottish Study Group, Pitlochry
  • Life as an Academic Physician. Oct 2010 Young Diabetologists Forum, Edinburgh, QMRI
  • Hypoglycaemia Tolerance Sept 2010 Annual Paediatric Endocrinologists Meeting, Sterling
  • Integrated pathways involved in glucosensing. March 2010 Diabetes UK, Liverpool
  • Developments in Hypoglycaemia Research. March 2008 Diabetes UK Conference, Glasgow
  • Hypoglycaemic Stress; Homeostasis Challenged. Oct 2007 Scottish Society for Experimental Medicine, Aberdeen

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being


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