The BURST committee comprises of a core committee as well as an advisory board of senior members and international representatives.
Veeru Kasivisvanathan, Academic Clinical Lecturer in Urology, University College London
Veeru studied Medicine at Imperial College London, completing his core surgical training in London. He is currently an NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer at University College London and University College London Hospital. He has been awarded a PhD in the role of MRI-targeted biopsy in the diagnosis of prostate cancer at University College London.
Veeru led collaborative research amongst international research groups and has completed PRECISION (NCT02380027), an international multi-centre randomised control trial across 25 centres in 11 countries. He published this work in the New England Journal of Medicine which contributed to a change in the NICE, European Association of Urology (EAU) and American Urology Association (AUA) guidelines for prostate cancer diagnosis. He has been awarded the BMJ Research Paper of the Year in 2019, the EAU Prostate Cancer Research Awarded of 2019 and the British Association of Urological Surgeon’s John Anderson 2019 Award for outstanding and inspirational contribution to Urology. He was awarded a Hunterian Professorship 2020 for contribution to surgical sciences and the Evening Standard Award for being one of London’s most influential people in Health in 2018.
He has a strong foundation in research methodology, having completed a Masters in Epidemiology and Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Trials at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He is also Associate Editor of the International Journal of Surgery and section editor of the BJU International. Since he founded the BURST Research Collaborative, he has been passionate about making collaborative research work.
Outside of work, Veeru loves sport, particularly football and tries to play every week, knees permitting.
Taimur Shah, Urology SpR, London
Taimur studied Medicine at University College London and completed his foundation and core training in London and East of England. After a very enjoyable ST3/LAT year in Cardiff, Taimur obtained an urology NTN in London. After two further years as a SpR he decided to take an Out Of Programme experience to undertake a period of Research (OOPR) to undertake a PhD on imaging and focal therapy for radio-recurrent prostate cancer. He is currently working as an SpR and Charing Cross Hospital London, Imperial College London (ICL) and is part of the Imperial Prostate (IP) research group at Imperial College London (ICL) which focusses on clinical trials for prostate cancer with a particular interest in diagnostics and focal ablative therapy and two new RCTs ATLANTA and CHRONOS on the horizon. He has experience in coordinating and delivering phase II trials in prostate cancer (FORECAST and SMART) and has been Co-PI on other NCRN trials (PROMIS, CADMUS and PRECISION).
Taimur also won the “Best presentation” for his MIMIC collaborative project proposal at the BAUS academic meeting, “Urology’s got Talent session” in London, November 2014. Since then the project has seen an international roll out and MIMIC has won numerous prizes at EAU, BAUS and ASIT.
Outside of work, Taimur is a keen golfer and previously has spent many years playing cricket which included a spell as president of the RUMS cricket team. He also has a major interest in IT and technology and can be often found trawling blogs for the latest life changing gadget!
Arjun Nathan, ST1 Urology, London
Arjun graduated from University College London and is currently starting his training in Urology at the Royal Free Hospital, London. He is also an NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Urology with the Royal College of Surgeons, working with the National Prostate Cancer Audit team.
As well as leading multi-centre studies and publishing in leading journals, he has presented across the world at international conferences. His current interests are in robotic surgery and prostate cancer.
Arjun also has a keen interest in medical education and has completed an Associate Fellowship with the Higher Education Academy. He was an Undergraduate Clinical Supervisor at the University of Cambridge. Additionally, he founded the National Surgical Teaching Society (NSTS) with an aim to improve surgical teaching with innovative technology for medical students and foundation year doctors.
Outside of work, Arjun spends his time on the football pitch pining over the days when he wasn’t as slow, and his back didn’t hurt as much.
Arjun K Nambiar, Urology StR, Newcastle
Arjun did his undergraduate medical training in India before coming to the UK in 2010. After a memorable and productive stint as a Clinical Research Registrar in Swansea, he is now a specialist registrar in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He has authored a number of peer-reviewed publications in urology, is a Cochrane systematic review author and went on to become the youngest member of a European Association of Urology Guideline Panel. He is also a reviewer for European Urology, the BJUI and International Journal of Urology. His academic interests include research methodology especially pertaining to systematic reviews and critical analysis for which he has conducted workshops and tutorials both nationally and internationally. His non-urological hobbies and interests include landscape photography, tennis and football.
Cameron Alexander, Core Surgical Trainee, North West
Cameron is a urology-themed core surgical trainee in the North West region. His interest in academic urology was first fostered whilst at medical school at the University of Aberdeen, where he also completed a BSc in Medical Sciences.
He has subsequently developed a broad range of experience in clinical research (as a research author for The Cochrane Collaboration and Oxford Stone Group), translational research (as a Fulbright Scholar at Stanford University), and in clinical education (as a medical demonstrator at the University of St Andrews).
He is excited to join BURST in 2020 to help deliver impactful and well-designed research that looks to answer the big questions in urology.
In his spare time Cameron can be found running, travelling, and seeking out the best local spots for food and drink.
Kevin Gallagher, Urology SpR, Scotland East
Kevin studied Medicine at the University of Edinburgh including an intercalated degree in Pharmacology. He has completed a MRC clinical research training fellowship PhD and is now a urology registrar in East of Scotland.
National Site Coordinator
Kenneth MacKenzie, Urology SpR, North Eastern
Kenneth studied medicine at the University of Dundee and completed his Foundation Training in and around Bristol. A year in Urology as a SHO in Bristol gave him his first exposure to the speciality. He moved north to Newcastle Upon Tyne for Core Training and is now progressing through Specialty Training in Urology in North East Deanery.
Eleanor Zimmermann, Urology SpR, Southwest
Eleanor graduated from Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry after intercalating at Bristol University and has completed a postgraduate certificate in Surgical Sciences with Edinburgh University. She completed her foundation training in Exeter before spending a year working in General Surgery and Urology in Perth, Australia. After completing Urology themed Core Surgical Training in the West Midlands she moved back to the Southwest to start her registrar training. She is currently an ST4 on maternity leave and thoroughly enjoying balancing her amazing new mum life with research!
Eleanor has a keen interest in education and research and recently completed a RCT on patient education using multimedia, of which she is co-investigator. She was part of the RCSEng working party that devised the national Undergraduate Surgical Curriculum, which was published and disseminated in 2015. Eleanor has published work on paediatric urology, enhanced recovery in upper tract surgery – which was awarded joint SURG best abstract prize in 2015, and has co-authored two Cochrane reviews. She joined the BURST Committee in 2017.
Outside of work, Eleanor enjoys discovering new country hikes and wild swimming spots with her family (including Ziggy the lazy greyhound), and is a rather amateur but keen squash player!
IDENTIFY Trainee Lead
Sinan Khadhouri, Urology SpR, East of Scotland
Sinan studied medicine at St George’s Hospital Medical School and completed his foundation training in Cambridge and East Anglia. After a year in Neurosurgery he went on to complete his core surgical training in Exeter embarking on a Urology career. Following this Sinan spent 6 months in rural Zambia as a senior surgical registrar and helped start up a urology service as well as perform some exciting surgery. He returned to Exeter to complete a research year, launching IDENTIFY I. He joined the BURST committee whilst developing IDENTIFY II with them, and has recently started his Registrar training in the East of Scotland. He is lead trainee for the IDENTIFY study which has become the largest study on haematuria in secondary care. He is also involved with the Urology research unit in Aberdeen University, as well working with the EAU guidelines panel through the BURST Committee.
Sinan has a keen interest in clinical research and collaborative studies. He has previously presented and published the BAUS national data audit outcomes for prostatectomies and cystectomies at BAUS and EAU, winning best poster prize for the former.
Outside of work, Sinan enjoys playing racket sports, travelling and walking his Bernese Mountain Dog!
Patient & Public Representatives
Meghana Kulkarni, ST4 Urology Registrar, London
Meg is an ST4 specialist registrar in London with an interest in Urological oncology and is currently undertaking a PhD in PSMA PET imaging in prostate cancer at King’s College London.
She trained at St George’s Hospital Medical school and during an intercalated BSc in surgery and anaesthesia at Imperial College, developed a keen interest in academic medicine.
She subsequently completed an Academic Foundation Job in renal transplantation in London and Core Surgical Training in Brighton.
She has been the principal investigator of several research projects, following successful grant applications with GlaxoSmithKline and the Medical Research Council.
She has published in peer-reviewed journals, presented extensively both nationally and internationally and has won prizes for her research work from the Physiological Society, the Royal Society of Medicine, the British Transplantation Society and the European Association of Urology.
Meg is also interested in global surgery and has worked in France, Australia, the Gambia, Senegal, South Africa and the USA. She is keen to continue building these links, to enhance the learning and skills-sharing of healthcare professionals both here and abroad, improve patient care and the availability of resources and collaborate on audit and research.
Meg loves tennis, travelling, cooking (eating) and being warm.
Nikita Bhatt, ST4 Urology, East of England
Nikita completed her undergraduate medical training in India, and got her first taste of Urology as an SHO in Dublin, Ireland. She developed a keen interest in it ever since and is currently a Specialist Registrar in the East of England deanery. She has a Masters in Surgery (MCh) from the National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG) and a Masters in Medical Education (MMed) from the University of Dundee. She is an associate panel member on the EAU paediatric urology panel, EAU guidelines Social Media panel and a BURST rep on the BAUS Endourology Committee. She is a keen researcher and has authored several peer-reviewed publications, including a urology handbook for medical students and has worked on research projects with the EAU research foundation. She is a regular reviewer for European Urology Focus, BMC Urology, European Urology Oncology and has also reviewed for Journal of Urology, BJUI, and the BJS among other journals. She has presented her work nationally and internationally and has been awarded prizes for her research at the national urology meeting in Ireland. She was one of the finalists in the Dragon’s Den in BAUS in 2018 and is currently working on developing the project with BURST. Her areas of interest include medical device improvement and innovation (including stents and catheters), medical education, reconstructive and adolescent/ paediatric urology.
Outside of work, Nikita is passionate about health and fitness, loves travelling and hiking, and is a dancer who misses the stage!
Keiran Clement, ST3 Urology, Scotland West
Keiran studied medicine at the University of Aberdeen and completed an Academic Foundation Programme in Dundee. During his undergraduate studies, he completed an intercalated degree in medical sciences. He joined the BURST committee in 2018, and is currently a Urology registrar in the West of Scotland.
During his BMedSci, he worked with the Cochrane Incontinence Group which first sparked his interest in academic urology. This led to him being the lead author on two Cochrane reviews, an opportunity to present internationally, and the award of the Young Investigator of the Year at the International Continence Society annual conference in 2013. He has since published and presented a number of other clinical projects nationally, and is hoping to utilise his time in BURST to help further the committee’s plans for its’ first interventional study in the near future.
Outside of work, Keiran still struggles to play Sunday pub-league football with two knackered knees, and has recently become an extremely reluctant runner.
Core Trainee Representative
Chuanyu Gao, Core Surgical Trainee, KSS Deanery
Chuanyu is a Core Surgical Trainee in KSS Deanery after completing his Academic Foundation Years in East of England Foundation School. He graduated from UCL Medical School and completed his iBSc in Surgical Sciences. He has been actively involved in research since medical school, and has presented in multiple conferences.
He first became involved with BURST on the MIMIC Study as an international site coordinator and he was the representative for medical students. He is the webmaster for BURST and current foundation representative.
In his free time, he likes to travel but increasingly unlikely in recent climate.
Foundation Doctors Representative
Alexander Light, Academic Foundation Doctor, East of England
Alex joined BURST in 2018 as a medical student representative and is now one of our foundation year representatives. He completed his undergraduate medical training at King’s College London, and is currently an Academic Foundation Doctor in surgery with the University of Cambridge.
Having been captivated by urology since year 3 of medical school, he has since authored several publications and presented at both national and international levels. Currently, Alex aims to pursue further academic training with hopes of becoming an academic urologist. His research interests include uro-oncology and technology.In his spare time,
Alex is a keen landscape and travel photographer, and extremely occasional runner.
Chon Lam, Foundation Year Doctor, Wales
Chon Lam is a recent graduate from UCL and first became involved with BURST as a collaborator for the IDENTIFY study. He has completed an intercalated BSc in Physiology and Pharmacology at UCL and looks forward to further developing his research skills with BURST.
Chon is passionate about medical education and facilitating opportunities for medical students to get involved with research. In 2017/18 he was the lead for the UCL Academic Prehospital Care Student Selected Component (SSC), a formally assessed module selected by students in their first two years at UCL medical school with many students subsequently going on to present their work at national level.
Chon is an Associate of the Royal College of Organists and enjoys pursuing classical music interests in his spare time.
Medical Student Representatives
William Cambridge, University of Edinburgh (5th year)
William is a 5th year medical student at the University of Edinburgh. He has previously completed an intercalated BMedSci in Surgical Sciences and hopes to pursue a career in academic surgery. His interests lie in surgical oncology, transplantation and collaborative research. He also sits on the STARSurg Steering Committee and is currently completing a collaborative study involving both BURST & STARSurg, exploring the rates and predictors of post-operative pulmonary complications following urological surgery. Outside of his studies, William enjoys rugby, squash and trekking along Scotland’s coastline.
Keerthanaa Jayaraajan, Imperial College London (5th Year)
Keerthanaa is a 5th year medical student at Imperial College London. She is passionate about clinical innovation to improve the quality of healthcare provision for the better, with a focus on user-centric app design. Examples of this include making app designs for: STI home-testing in collaboration with the Helix Centre in St Mary’s Hospital, NHS’s mental health service (IAPT) and BURST’s MIMIC risk calculator.
She is driven by the potential real-world application for patients and has developed entrepreneurial skills through her intercalated BSc in Healthcare Management and paediatric asthma project focusing on making inhaler adjuncts to improve inhaler technique. As part of the project, she received Jenny Higham Grant, working in collaboration with medical students in NTU in Singapore and is currently partaking in Imperial’s Entrepreneurship programme “WE Innovate.” She is excited by the prospects of medical technology having the potential to revolutionise patient care and as such, is Vice President of Imperial’s Medtech Society and an organiser of Imperial’s Health Hackathon in collaboration with NHSX and Prudential.
As a medical student representative, she is keen to learn more about research methodology and multi-centre research. She became interested in BURST after seeing how previous studies were rolled out on a large scale with the aid of collaborative research and is especially drawn to the potential of this research improving patient care. Alongside the other medical student representatives, she is keen to learn from more experienced members of the team and to promote Urology amongst medical students.Outside of work, she loves to travel to new places, spending time with family and friends and baking.
Aqua Asif, Leicester University Medical School (4th Year)
Aqua is a fourth-year graduate medical student at University of Leicester. She is an aspiring surgeon with a passion for incorporating new cutting-edge technologies into surgery, especially robotics. As a medical student representative, she hopes to pursue urology from a surgical perspective while learning from the talented and diverse team that comprises this research collaborative. She is an avid graphic designer and hopes to combine her existing skills with those of her other team members to further the reach of BURST’s research.
Her dedication to medical education and love of statistics drew her to be on the committee. As an experienced leader through representing students at both Royal Holloway, University of London and University of Leicester, she hopes to strengthen her teamwork and leadership skills on a national scale.
Outside of her studies, Aqua enjoys spending time with her friends and family, attending concerts, online gaming, and travelling abroad.
Alexander Ng, UCL Medical School (4th year)
Alex is a 4th year medical student at UCL. He is an aspiring surgeon, having completed his iBSc in Surgical Sciences, and was awarded the RCS Intercalated BSc in Surgery Award for his research, which has led to multiple prize-winning conference presentations. He is also heavily involved in UCL’s Surgical Society, being the 2019-20 Urology Chair and 2020-21 Academic Surgery chair.
Alex has a strong interest in Urology and is involved in projects with the Urology teams at both The Royal Free Hospital and UCLH at Westmoreland Street Hospital. He is the lead data collector, coordinator and medical student lead in a RALP service evaluation project evaluating the functional and biochemical outcomes of a RALP 10-year 2,000 patient series. He is also the lead for the LEARN study, an audit into Urological teaching in British medical schools nationally.
Outside of his studies, Alex is an avid rugby fan and misses the days he could run 400m under a minute. He also enjoys a casual game of badminton.
Vinson Chan, Leeds Medical School (4th year)
Vinson is currently a 4th Year Medical Student at the University of Leeds. Having completed an undergraduate research programme at the Chinese University of Hong Kong he developed an interest in academic urology. He had experiences in performing systematic reviews as a trained Cochrane author and has published multiple systematic reviews in and outside the field of uro-oncology.
Vinson is a keen leader and advocate for medical students, serving as President for the Leeds Medical Student Representative Council and Cutting Edge Leeds Surgical Society. His hard work was recognised by a nomination for positive impact award at the Leeds Union Partnership awards. He was also recently awarded the Dennis Parker Award for innovation for his work on self-care in surgery. He hopes to be able to contribute to and learn from BURST’s collaborative model of research and methodology.
In his free time, Vinson volunteers for the Yorkshire Ambulance as a community first responder. He also enjoys travelling, photography and spending time with his dog.