Epilepsy Research UK is proud and pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Helen Cross as President of the organisation. Professor Cross has long been involved in the organisation being Chair of Trustees between 2005 and 2011. We are delighted that Professor Cross has now agreed to be President of the organisation.
About Professor Cross
Professor Helen Cross is The Prince of Wales’s Chair of Childhood Epilepsy and Honorary Consultant in Paediatric Neurology at UCL Institute of Child Health, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust, London, and Young Epilepsy, Lingfield.
She is currently Clinical Advisor to the Children’s Epilepsy Surgery Services (CESS) (2012-present), is Chair of the Medicines for Children Research Network Neurosciences Clinical Study Group (2012-present), Chair of the Evidence Update of the NICE Guidelines for Epilepsy (2013) and was recently elected Secretary General of the ILAE to serve 2013-2017.
She is on the Editorial Board of Epileptic Disorders, Epilepsy Research, Developmental Medicine Child Neurology and European Journal of Paediatric Neurology.
Professor Cross qualified from Birmingham University in 1984, trained in paediatrics in Birmingham and subsequently in paediatric neurology in London, obtaining her PhD in 1998.
Her former roles include:
▪ Chair of the ILAE Commission for Paediatrics (2005 – 2009)
▪ Assistant Secretary to the Board of the European Paediatric Neurology Society (2005 – 2009)
▪ Chair of the Trustees of Epilepsy Research UK (2005 – 2011)
▪ President of the British Paediatric Neurology Association (2008 – 2011)
▪ Clinical Advisor to the update of the NICE guidelines on diagnosis and management of the epilepsies in adults and children (2009 – 2012)
▪ International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) Commission for European Affairs, (2009 – 2013)
▪ ILAE Co-Chair of the sub-committee for ILAE Task Force for Global Outreach (2009 – 2013)
▪ Chair of the Task Force for Paediatric Epilepsy Surgery (2001-2013).
Professor Cross has published widely on seizure, neuropsychological and behavioural outcomes in children who have undergone surgical resection for treatment of their epilepsy. Her research has focused on improving outcomes for children with early onset epilepsy. Her early research was into improving imaging techniques to determine areas of likely seizure onset in children with drug resistant focal epilepsy and has developed an epilepsy surgery programme based on her research.
She conducted the first randomized controlled trial of the ketogenic diet in the treatment of children with drug resistant focal epilepsy and is endeavouring to conduct the same in the very young and adults. Recognising there was little in the way of control data with regard to neurodevelopmental progress, she initiated the North London Epilepsy in Infancy study, where a cohort of children was recruited at diagnosis in the first two years of life, and has been followed to at least three years. She is now aiming to conduct a similar study over a wider geographical area, also examining phenotypes and genotypes.
She is also endeavouring to examine mechanisms of cognitive impairment – in particular examining the relationship of sleep to memory consolidation.