Dr Takis Athanasopoulos

Educational background

  • 2006: Ph.D. Biomedical Sciences, University of London, UK (Thesis submitted February 2006/Ph.D awarded July 2006, straight pass) under the mentorship of professor George Dickson (co-supervisor: prof Jim Owen, RFHSM/UCL). Examiners: professors John Fabre and Bruce Middleton. Thesis Title: Studies on apolipoprotein-E gene transfer to skeletal muscle cells in vitro and in vivo.
  • 1995: B.Sc. Biology, University of Patras, Greece. (Degree admitted March 1995/Conferred April 1995), Graduation Grade (6.48/10: 64.8%). Number of Subjects taken: 47

B. Other Professional Qualifications:

Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching Skills in Higher Education (TSiHE/INSTILL). Membership of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) ; Home Office personal license (modules 1-4, including surgery); Basic Information Technology Skills (Modules 1&2) and Staff IT Training Module (Information Security Department); Introduction to Intellectual Property (IP) and its Relevance to Research Scientists; FACS Canto II certified user, BD Biosciences, Oxford Science Park, Oxford (September 2008); Clinigene European Network of Excellence (NoE) (www.clinigene.eu) Rapporteur (October 2007 & November 2008)

Research interests

Major Areas of Research Interests: Novel HIV vaccine vector development (viral: Ad, AAV, lenti- & non-viral), Genetic Vaccines, development of Adeno-Associated Viral (rAAV) vectors for Gene therapy of cardiovascular, neuromuscular and neurodegenerative disease; HIV immunobiology and Cell & Molecular Biology of muscle, Development of plasmid and viral AAV/chimeric (Adeno/Retro) vector systems for Atherosclerosis & Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD)/muscle disorders, Genetic Disorders/Cancer

Research Projects/Positions held to date:

  • January 2007-current: Postdoctoral Reseach Associate/Member of RHUL Staff-Design of novel HIV vaccine vectors; member of the CAVD http://www.cavd.org/ VDC Patterson consortium (project funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation/Imperial College London).
  • July 2002- December 2006: Postdoctoral Research Associate/ Research assistant, Centre for Biomedical Sciences, RHUL:-Development of AAV microdystrophin vectors for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) (project funded by Muscular Dystrophy Campaign, (MDC) UK and partially supported by the Association Francaise Contres Le Myopathies (AFM), France.
  • April 2000-July 2002: Research Assistant, RHUL: Development of adeno-retro viral hybrid vectors for DMD.

Awards/ Scientific recognition:

  • April 2010:  FEBS travel bursary http://www.febs.org/ - 35th FEBS Congress, Göteborg (Gothenburg), Sweden, June 26 – July 1, 2010 (http://www.febs2010.org/ )
  • August 2009: Young Scientist Program award recipient (http://www.iubmb.org/)-21st IUBMB and the 12th FAOBMB International Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB-2009-Congress), Shanghai, China July-August, 2009.
  • February 2009: Young Investigator Award recipient- Clinigene Network of Excellence (NoE) (www.clinigene.eu): €15, 000 towards Research Consumables-An International Project involving RHUL (UK), Plasmid Factory (Germany) and CHU Nantes Vector Core (France)
  • October 2007/November 2008: Clinigene European Network of Excellence (NoE) Rapporteur (www.clinigene.eu)
  • March 2007: Nominated candidate for the Lez Fairbairn award, at the 4th BSGT Annual Conference, Warwick.
  • January 2006: Local Scientific Event Grant (Biochemical Society, UK) recipient
  • February 2004: EMBO/FEBS travel award-Barcelona, Spain, Feb 1-14 2004
  • February 2001: Formal Invitation Offer to join the Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics, NHLBI, National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA, Mentor: Dr Rob Kotin.
  • Jan 1996-2000: State Scholarship Foundation Fellowship (SSF/IKY) recipient (http://www.iky.gr/IKY/portal/en) to study for a PhD degree in Molecular Approaches of Gene Therapy (Scientific progress referee: prof. Nikolaos Anagnou). Exams/Subjects Classification: Cell & Molecular Biology: 16.33/20 (81.65%); Human Genetics 17.67/20 (88.35%); Virology: 16.33/20 (81.65%)
  • June 1995: First Class (10/10) in the 4th year annual project on ‘Site-Specific Mutagenesis induced by Environmental mutagenic substances and molecular detection studies by the PCR technique’, under the guidance of prof. Aglaia Athanassiadou and prof. Nikos Dimopoulos.

  Involvement in Grant-Funded Projects: Clinigene NoE (1), Grand Challenges Explorations/GCE (Bill & Mellinda Gates Foundation) (2), AFM (2), Muscular Dystrophy Campaign (MDC) (2), Alliance (British Council, Franco-British collaboration (1), Central Research Fund (CRF), Royal Society Conference (1) and Joint Project Grants (1). A Local Scientific Event Grant (sponsored by the Biochemical Society) was personally awarded in January 2006


A. Poster presentations: Keystone Symposia in Gene Therapy (USA) (co-author), European Atherosclerosis Society Meetings (Paris 1998, Athens/Kos 1999), 669th British Biochemical Society Meeting (Keele,1999), Gene Therapy & Molecular Biology International Conferences (Crete 1998), 7th & 8th Meetings of the European Society of Gene Therapy (Munich, 1999 & Stockholm, 2000), 4th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Gene Therapy, Seattle, Washington, USA (co-author) (30 May-3 June 2001), 9th Conference on Retrovirus and Opportunistic Infections, Washington State Convention and Trade Center, Seattle, WA (co-author) (Feb 24-28, 2002), 11th ESGT meeting, Edinburgh, Scotland (14-17 November 2003), 1st British Society of Gene Therapy (BSGT) meeting, Oxford, UK, 14-17 March 2004, 3rd Vecteurotrain Conference, Evry, Paris, France, 14-26 June 2004, 2nd BSGT annual meeting, Manchester, UK, 3-5 April 2005, Myology 2005, Nantes, France, 9-13 May 2005, American Society of Gene Therapy (ASGT) 2005 Annual Meeting, June 1-5, St Louis, MO, USA, 16th Annual Congress of the European-Society-of-Gene-and-Cell-Therapy Brugge, BELGIUM, NOV 13-16, 2008, 7th BSGT, Royal Holloway Univ. of London, 29-31 March 2010.

B. Oral presentations:

  • 5th Annual Scandinavian Atherosclerosis Conference, an International Meeting, Copenhagen, May 28th-31st, 1998,
  • The British Hyperlipidaemia Association’s Annual Conference, Glasgow, 2nd-4th July 1998 (Committee’s shared presentation award),
  • Gene Therapy & Molecular Biology International Conference, Crete, 7-17 August 1999,
  • SGM 152nd Ordinary Meeting , University of Edinburgh, 7-11 April 2003 (Virus Vectors, Workshop),
  •  2nd Vecteurotrain Conference & Course (FEBS fellow), Bellatera, Barcelona, Spain, 1-14 Feb 2004,
  • 74th European Atherosclerosis Society (EAS) Congress (Invited speaker), Seville, Spain, 17-20 April 2004,
  • 4th BSGT Annual Conference, Warwick, UK, March 2007 (Nominated candidate for the Lez Fairbairn award),  
  • Combined Meeting of the 17th European-Society-of-Gene-and-Cell-Therapy/16thGerman-Society-for-Gene-Therapy/4thGerman-Society-for-Stem-Cell-ResearchHannover, GERMANY, NOV 21-25, 2009 .

C. Moderated poster presentations (oral): 71st Congress of the European Atherosclerosis Society, Athens, 26th-29th May 1999, EAS Post-satellite symposium, Kos, 30th May-1st June 1999, MRS / AMS / RCP Clinician Scientists in Training (National), Royal College of Physicians, London, UK, 19th May 2004, 21st IUBMB and the 12th FAOBMB International Congress of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB-2009-Congress), Shanghai, China July-August, 2009. 

Proposal Reviews/ Evaluations:


  • Reviewer of Scientific Papers


Society Memberships & Professional Associations:

1. British Biochemical Society (BBS) www.biochemistry.org/  (Membership Number: 639216) & Theme Panel VII Member: Mechanisms of Development & Disease (http://www.biochemistry.org/Conferences/ThemePanels/VIIDevelopmentandDisease.aspx

2. European Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (ESGCT) www.esgct.org  (Membership Number: 00370)

3. British Society for Gene Therapy (BSGT) www.bsgt.org/  (Membership Number: 1045)

4. Associate Practitioner-Higher Education Academy (HEA) www.heacademy.ac.uk/ (Membership Number: 30154)

5. Society of Experimental Biology (SEB) www.sebiology.org/  (Membership Number: 2967)

6. American Society of Gene Therapy (ASGT) www.asgt.org (Membership Number: 12656)

7. American Society for Microbiology www.asm.org/  (Membership No: 55796924)

8. Society for General Microbiology www.sgm.ac.uk/  (Membership Number: 1074859)

Other Professional Associations:

The Collaboration for AIDS Vaccine Discovery (CAVD) member (www.cavd.org), London Biotechnology Network (LBN) member, Biochemical Society Database of Expertise member, EU FP6 & FP7 Database of Expertise member, Clinigene NoE associate member (www.clinigene.eu) Innocentive member (http://www.innocentive.com/), Linkedin member (https://www.linkedin.com/) Centre for Bioscience member (HEA) (http://www.bioscience.heacademy.ac.uk/ ), Ad viral group member (www.researchgate.net), BiomedExperts member (http://www.biomedexperts.com/)

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