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Dr Alice Hughes

GW4 Clinical Academic Training PhD Fellow

 01223 4088231

 RILD Building Level 3


University of Exeter Medical School, RILD Building, RD&E Hospital Wonford, Barrack Road, Exeter, EX2 5DW, UK


Alice is a clinical trainee in Obstetrics & Gynaecology with a particular interest in Maternal and Fetal Medicine. Her interest in research began whilst studying for her medical degree at the Universities of Exeter and Plymouth. She became interested in Genetics during a BSc in Reproductive and Developmental Sciences at Imperial College London. She went on to work as an Academic Foundation Doctor in Exeter and completed a MSc in Genomic Medicine alongside her research work. Following an Academic Clinical Fellowship in Cambridge, Alice has returned to the South West to complete a PhD and build upon her previous research in Exeter, focusing on birth weight, genetics and fetal insulin.


  • BSc (Hons) Medical Sciences with Reproductive and Developmental Sciences, Imperial College London, 2014. Awarded with First Class Honours.
  • BMBS, Universities of Exeter and Plymouth, 2015. Awarded with Distinction.
  • MSc Genomic Medicine, University of Exeter, 2018. Awarded with Distinction.


Research interests

Alice’s PhD is focusing on fetal growth and the role of insulin, using monogenic and polygenic data to find out how and why babies are born very small or very large. She is also interested in prediction of adverse pregnancy outcomes, particularly in relation to pre-eclampsia, fetal growth restriction and diabetes in pregnancy.

Research projects

Current Projects:

  • PhD project 2019-2022: Investigating the importance of fetal insulin in birth weight and early postnatal growth. Supervised by Dr Rachel Freathy, Dr Sarah Flanagan and Professor Andrew Hattersley.

External Engagement and Impact


  • Association of Physicians of Great Britain and Ireland Prize, 2013
  • Peninsula Student Clinical Academics' Award winner, 2015
  • Nominated for the Diabetes UK Nick Hales Young Investigator Award, 2017
  • First prize abstract winner, Diabetes UK Diabetes in Pregnancy Conference, 2021
  • Young Diabetologist and Endocrinologist Endocrine Forum Travel Award winner, 2022

Competitively funded studentships and postdoctoral fellowships

  • Association of Physicians of Great Britain and Ireland Intercalation Studentship, 2013-14
  • EASD Diabetes in Pregnancy Study Group Young Investigator Travel Fellowship, 2019
  • Wellcome Trust Funded GW4 Clinical Academic Training PhD Fellowship

External positions

  • American Diabetes Association Precision Medicine in Diabetes initiative, Gestational Diabetes Precision Prognostics group member


BMBS Healthcare in Practice SSU theme lead, Exeter Locality 2020-22.

Awarded “Above and Beyond” award for contribution to BMBS teaching programme 2022.

Supervision / Group

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