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Meet the Team

Professor Brian McKinstry, SHARE Director

Professor of Primary Care E-Health, University of Edinburgh and NHS Lothian

Professor Brian McKinstry - Share Director

Professor McKinstry has been a GP since 1983. A former Associate Dean for Medical Educational Research in NHS Education, he was appointed as a senior research fellow in primary care research in 2006 and Professor of Primary Care eHealth in 2011. He currently leads the Edinburgh Health Services Research Unit.

His research interests include a longstanding interest in how doctors consult with patients and he has carried out controlled trials and studies into telephone consulting and telehealthcare These studies include the management of chronic obstructive airways disease, heart failure, high blood pressure and diabetes.

Professor McKinstry has written extensively in biomedical journals on a number of different types of primary care research and is an editor for Biomedcentral Family Practice and The Cochrane Consumers and Communication Group.

Professor Colin Palmer, SHARE director

Professor Colin Palmer - GoSHARE Director

Professor Palmer earned a BSc in Genetics from Glasgow University in 1985 and a PhD in Molecular Toxicology from the University of London  in 1991. He has recently been elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE). He worked at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California from 1991 to 1995, and joined the laboratory of Professor Roland Wolf at the Biomedical Research Centre in Ninewells Hospital in 1995. In 1998, Professor Palmer established his own laboratory at the Biomedical  Research Centre, as a Principal Investigator and lecturer.  Professor Palmer was appointed to the Personal Chair of Pharmacogenomics in 2008.

His lab specializes in population genetic research and has research projects studying the genetic basis for susceptibility to common diseases such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, asthma and cancer. Professor Palmer has published over 200 papers in top journals and these have been cited by over 15,000 other studies worldwide.  Professor Palmer is Director of the Tayside Bioresource which has recruited over 10% of the Tayside population (60,000 individuals) to genetic studies (

 Shobna Vasishta,  SHARE  Programme Manager

Shobna Vasishta - Share Programme Manager

Shobna has a BSc in Pharmacology from Surrey University, and worked in research with Wyeth Laboratories for 8 years.  She has extensive Sales and Marketing experience in the Pharmaceutical Industry, with companies like MSD, GSK, SKB, Sanofi and Novo Nordisk.  The last 10 years have been spent project managing Clinical Trials in the University of Dundee.  Her spare time is spent in raising funds for various charities, especially the TICR Appeal for which she raised over £8 million  (  

Professor Frank Sullivan


Professor Sullivan has been an academic GP since 1984. He was appointed as the Director of the Scottish School of Primary Care in 2007 and elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2011.

His research interests lie mainly in health informatics and community based trials, covering the spectrum from record-linkage of electronic health records to decision support to the evaluation of complex interventions.

Professor Sullivan has published widely on a number of different types of primary care research, notably in the management of long-term conditions such as diabetes and coronary heart disease in the community.

Dr Roma Armstrong, West Node SHARE Co-ordinator

  Senior R&D Manager, NHSGGC

Lead for experimental and translational research. This included acting as professional secretariat for Biomedical &Therapeutic Research Committee, leading strategic initiatives e.g. Generation Scotland and managing sizeable research portfolios on cancer and cardio/cerebral-vascular disease.


Dr John Haughney, West Node SHARE Primary Care Co-ordinator

Dr John Haughney, West Node SHARE Primary Care Co-ordinator

Dr John Haughney is GP Director of the NHS Clinical Research Facilities in Glasgow, a sessional general practitioner and hospital practitioner, a past-president of the International Primary Care Respiratory Group and a former Chair of the GPIAG (PCRS (UK)).  He holds academic positions at both the University of Glasgow and the University of Aberdeen.

John’s personal principal interest is the delivery of effective, consistent care for patients with common respiratory diseases in the community; he has been involved in the British guidelines for asthma and for cough, led the Quality Improvement Scotland group developing standards for the children’s asthma care, was the clinical adviser (respiratory) to QIS, launching and helping implement standards for COPD in Scotland.

Away from work, he runs a taxi service for his family at weekends, provides them with indescribably large sums of money and is on a permanent, but unsuccessful, diet.


Dr Sam Philip, North Node SHARE Co-ordinator

Dr Sam Philip, North Node SHARE Co-ordinator

Dr Sam Philip is currently working as a Consultant Physician in the department of Diabetes and Endocrinology and as an honorary senior lecturer in biomedical physics at the University of Aberdeen. His research interests include health informatics, clinical trials, epidemiology and diabetic retinopathy. He is leading the development of tele-consultation service for people with diabetes in Orkney and Shetland. He has a strong interest in the development of information based technologies to support self-care in people with diabetes.

Kirsten Cumming, SHARE Admin Assistant 

Kirsten graduated Abertay University with a BSc(hons) in Food, Nutrition & Health in 2008. Since graduating she has worked in the retail industry up to management level with an emphasis in sales and communication. Kirsten is responsible for recruitment, administrative duties and in charge of the social media for SHARE.

Louise Dow, SHARE Project Assistant

Louise Dow - SHARE Project Assistant

Louise graduated with a PhD in microbiology from the University of Dundee, and has pursued a career in sales and training with the biomedical products sector.  Louise has had her hands full raising two wonderful children over the past few years but has now returned to work and is busy recruiting people to SHARE.