Meet the Endocrinologist: Interview with Prof Simon Pearce

Meet Simon Pearce, Professor of Endocrinology at Newcastle University and Programme Secretary for SfE BES 2017, in Harrogate, 6-8 November. We caught up with him to find out more about his work and to discover his upcoming highlights and top tips for the conference.

 Q: Tell us a little about your career path and endocrine interests

I qualified in medicine at the Newcastle University, completed my postgraduate education at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School in Hammersmith, Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston and as a Lecturer in Newcastle. I was appointed Senior Lecturer in Endocrinology in 2001 at Newcastle University and became Professor in 2007.

My main research area is the treatment for autoimmune thyroid diseases and Addison’s disease. I have published around 150 papers over the last 20 years spanning molecular endocrinology, clinical trials and guideline papers.

Q: Tell us a little about your role as SfE Programme Secretary

As Programme Secretary I organise the scientific programme for the annual conference. It’s a great privilege to be able to choose the speakers that I want to learn from. My assumption is that if I am interested in the topic, then it will interest others too.

2016 was my first year as programme secretary and the informal feedback about the quality of the symposia and meet the expert sessions as the meeting progressed was great. I was very happy on the last day when it was all over though, with no significant hitches.

Q: What do you think are the programme highlights at SfE BES 2017?

There is a very strong programme on several subjects including calcium and bone, thyroid, and female reproductive endocrinology. Following the success of last year’s thyroid masterclass, we have scheduled a bone masterclass with two internationally respected experts on osteoporosis, a clinical management symposium on hyper- and hypo-calcaemia and a session on steroids and bone.

The meet the expert sessions on opiate-induced hypopituitarism, hyperthyroidism in pregnancy and next-generation DNA sequencing promise to keep you up to date on the latest advances in these important and fast-moving areas.

We also welcome more than 20 overseas speakers, including cutting edge plenary lectures from some giants in our field, Teresa Woodruff, Andrew Arnold and Martin Schlumberger. Home-grown highlights will also include two well-known members of our Society, Andrew Hattersley and Julia Buckingham, who never fail to both entertain and inform.

Q: What are you particularly looking forward to?

I always enjoy the plenary lectures, and Andrew Hattersley has been an inspirational role model for me; translating the highest quality laboratory science to change clinical practice and improve patient outcomes. So I think his talk will be a highlight.

Q: Do you have some words of wisdom for anyone attending SfE BES for the first time?

Have a good look at the programme at a glance page and plan your most interesting sessions carefully. I receive  frequent comments that there is too much going on at the same time during the meeting and people would like to split themselves in two. My advice is go to the session that you know least about, as you stand to learn the most from this, even if it feels slightly outside your normal ‘comfort zone’.

Q: What do you think will be the next major breakthrough in endocrinology?

It’s clear that there is a lot of pharma work on small molecules that target several receptors at the same time to modulate appetite and metabolic phenotypes. I am also excited that during the next 10 years we may see new treatments for hyperthyroidism; the first advance since the early 1950s.

Follow the links to find out more about SfE BES 2017, view the scientific program and register online.

3 thoughts on “Meet the Endocrinologist: Interview with Prof Simon Pearce

  1. Giving radioactive iodine to patients with Graves’ disease should be abolished immediately. It interferes with the only medication offered for the resulting hypothyroidism which is levothyroxine and us patients are supposed to exist on no treatment at all, dragging ourselves through life with endless tiredness and hideous symptoms. All this denied by you so called endocrinologists.


    1. I was extremely struck by your response to the Simon Pearce interview, as it hit at a worry I am very concerned about. Do you know current thinking on this or can you point me to any available recent evidence or research about the side effects of levothyroxine after iodine treatment?


  2. I am hypothyroid and the medication sadly does not help me so i remain hypothyroid.
    My neck is swelling and I’m scared.
    I don’t know what to do or where to go to get help. I feel very fatigue/ exhausted and have a very poor quality of life.
    The GP told me I’m one of 10% that do not respond to treatment they cannot help me and do not know how to help me. I will become more bed bound over time.
    This left me feeling utterly devastated!
    I’ve also been told that I must accept that this is now my life! No further help or advice offered or given.
    I’m writing this in bed ( Sunday afternoon) trying still to get some energy to get up.
    I watched the video on YouTube and was amazed by professor Simon Pearce!
    I would love to have a consultation and get some advice from him. I feel he is my only hope/ chance I have got left.
    How do I make contact with Professor Simon Pearce?
    Kind regards Tracey


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