William Stimson

Visiting Professor

Personal Statement

Biography

Trained as a Biochemist at the University of St Andrews (BSc Hon, 1st, 1968 and PhD, 1971). Moved to a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Dundee, and then to Glasgow.
Formed the Division of Immunology in 1984, which then became the Department of Immunology in 1991. The Department attained a 5* rating in the 1996 Research Assessment Exercise.
Professor Stimson was holder of the 1982 City of Glasgow ‘Loving Cup' and is the Chairman of the Institute of Nanotechnology and the Nanomedicine Committee. He has been intimately involved in the formation of 8 companies and presently sits on the Boards of five. He has supervised 35 PhD and 7 MPhil students.


Research Topics

Diagnostic and Therapeutic Antibodies

Work includes production of rodent monoclonal antibodies against bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi and toxins for use in the food industry and for assessing environmental pollution. Diagnostic antibodies are also under investigation for use in cardiac monitoring with a number of biomarker substances.
Collaborative work with the Oncology at the University of Nottingham and the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, has lead to the production of 2 therapeutic antibodies. These are humanised derivatives of the murine 791T36 anti-CD55 antibody and the R24 anti-GD3 antibody. Both of these had been used in cancer treatment before but induced a significant human anti-mouse response. These have been humanised by CDR grafting and the addition of human IgG1 constant domains to give chimeric antibodies. The chosen constructs retain all the required physiological activities - ADCC, complement fixation and homophilic binding in the case of R24 and CD55/CD97 inhibition with respect to 791T/36. These will go to clinical trial for late stage melanoma and colorectal cancer following toxicology.


Immunoadjuvants

Novel adjuvants and carrier systems for the effective delivery of a variety of vaccine antigens and immunotherapeutic agents are under development. Of particular interest is an oral vaccination delivery system intended for ‘user-friendly' ‘flu vaccination in the elderly. Other work is dissecting the mechanisms by which adjuvants exert their effects on the immune system, particularly the use of human alpha-interferon subtypes for specifically targeting the humoral and cell-mediated immune responses.

Immunodiagnostics Systems

Studies are in progress to develop simple, rapid systems, which may be used by the inexperienced person ‘in the field' to detect a wide range of substances - so called ‘point of care/point of use' assays. Originally we developed the sandwich ELISA in conjunction with Organon Teknika and since then have researched the use of chemiluminescence with acridinium esters for rapid, high sensitivity assays. Latterly, TR-FRET, using Terbium and Europium, has been studied as a means of producing a platform, user-friendly diagnostic system that requires no manipulations by the user other than the addition of sample. A cost-effective reader has also been made for this technology, which could make a ‘point of care' method of choice.


Salmonella

Selected Publications

  • Rahman, S. and Stimson, W.H. Characterisation of monoclonal antibodies with specificity for the core oligosaccharide of Shigella lipopolysaccharide. Hybridoma, 20/2, 85-90 (2001).
  • Ferro, V.A., Khan, M.A.H., Earl, E.R., Harvey, M.J.A., Colston, A. and Stimson, W.H. influence of carrier protein conjugation site and terminal modification of a GnRH-1 peptide sequence in the development of a highly specific anti-fertility vaccine. American J. Reprod. Immunol., 48, 361-371 (2002).
  • Khan, M.A.H., Ferro, V.A. and Stimson, W.H. Use of a highly specific monoclonal antibody against the central variable amino acid sequence of mammalian gonadotrophin releasing hormone to evaluate GnRH-1 binding sites in adult male rats. American J. Reprod. Immunol., 48, 1-10 (2002).
  • Ferro, V.A., Bradbury, F., Cameron, P., Shakir, E., Rahman, S.R. and Stimson, W.H. In vitro susceptibilities of Shigella flexneri and Streptococcus pyrogenes to inner gel of Aloe barbadensis Miller. Antimicrobial Agents. Chemotherapy, 47, 1137-1139 (2003).
  • Ahsan,M., Islam, S.K., Gray, A.I. and Stimson, W.H. Cytotoxic diterpenes from Scoparia dulcis. J. Nat. Prod., 66, 958-961 (2003).
  • Mann, J.F.S., Ferro, V.A., Mullen, A.B., Tetley, L., Mullen, M., Carter, K.C., Alexander, J. and Stimson, W.H. Optimisation of a lipid-based oral delivery system containing A/Panama influenza haemagglutinin. Vaccine, 22, 2425-2429 (2004).
  • Ferro, V.A., Costa, R., Carter, K.C., Harvey, M.J.A., Waterston, M.M., Mullen, A.B., Matschke, C., Mann, J.F.S., Colston, A. and Stimson, W.H. Immune responses to a GnRH-based anti-fertility immunogen, induced by different adjuvants and subsequent effects on vaccine efficacy. Vaccine, 22,1024-1031 (2004).
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  1. Bio , USA

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventKey-note speaker and plenary lectures at conferences

  2. Central European Journal of Immunology

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial board member

  3. Food and Agricultural Immunology

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial board member

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William Stimson

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