Imperial College London

Dr Richard H. Barton

Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction

Honorary Research Fellow



+44 (0)20 7594 3014r.barton Website




SAFB 660Sir Alexander Fleming BuildingSouth Kensington Campus






BA, MSc(Hons), MA(Hons), PhD, CChem, CSci, MRSC

After a first degree in chemistry completed at Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand), Richard spent some years in the arts faculty at The University of Auckland studying psychology and the philosophy of science as well as teaching logic, before returning to chemistry to model the kinetics of dynamic processes on iron electrode surfaces. This was followed by a period of research in physical and analytical chemistry, before taking up an AGMARDT scholarship with Professor Charmian O’Connor, CBE, FRSC, to study a commercial enzyme preparation used in the food industry. Richard’s prize-winning PhD thesis involved initial work in protein purification and stability, and identified three catalytically-active enzymes. Subsequent study included the kinetics and elucidation of the stereoselective mechanism of reactions catalysed by the lipase-component, product stability characterisation, and the use of synthesised lipid-mimic compounds. Analytical techniques in quantitative 13C NMR spectroscopy were developed to determine the kinetics of intramolecular acyl migrations and to characterise complex and water-unstable reaction-product mixtures. Following the PhD, Richard took up a position in the UK Biotech industry, before a period freelancing in France.

Subsequently he took a position as Research Associate in the (now) Computational and Systems Medicine division of the Faculty of Medicine at Imperial College London.  He is also currently associated with the Centre for Integrated Systems Biology Imperial College (CISBIC) as a representative for the metabonomics component, and is involved in a major EU FP7 initiative on the role of the microbiome in fatty liver disease.

Research Interests

Richard has been involved in the development of metabonomic technologies, including work in spectral editing methodology and in data filtering techniques aimed at enhancing information recovery from high-field NMR spectroscopic data obtained from biofluids and bio-extracts. In particular, these metabonomic techniques have been being applied to produce and interrogate an evolving metabolic database, with aims which include a more precisely "fingerprinting" the complex repertoire of metabolic markers associated with the pathogenesis of type II diabetes, metabolic models of aging, microbial metabolomics, human disease processes, and molecular epidemiology of human populations. 

Other Interests (time permitting)

Growing cacti and succulents, audio electronics, 20th century classical music; walking, and hiking, logic, fundamental topics in contemporary physics.



Menghini R, Hoyles L, Cardellini M, et al., 2022, ITCH E3 ubiquitin ligase downregulation compromises hepatic degradation of branched-chain amino acids, Molecular Metabolism, Vol:59, ISSN:2212-8778

Hoyles L, Mayneris-Perxachs J, Cardellini M, et al., 2021, ­Iron status influences non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in obesity through the gut microbiome, Microbiome, Vol:9, ISSN:2049-2618, Pages:1-18

Mayneris-Perxachs J, Puig J, Burcelin R, et al., 2020, The <i>APOA1bp</i>-<i>SREBF</i>-<i>NOTCH</i> axis is associated with reduced atherosclerosis risk in morbidly obese patients, Clinical Nutrition, Vol:39, ISSN:0261-5614, Pages:3408-3418

Hoyles L, Fernandez-Real J-M, Federici M, et al., 2018, Publisher Correction: Molecular phenomics and metagenomics of hepatic steatosis in non-diabetic obese women, Nature Medicine, Vol:24, ISSN:1078-8956, Pages:1628-1628


Dumas M-E, Chilloux J, Myridakis A, et al., 2018, Microbiome inhibition of IRAK-4 by trimethylamine mediates metabolic and immune benefits in high fat diet-induced insulin resistance, 54th Annual Meeting of the European-Association-for-the-Study-of-Diabetes (EASD), SPRINGER, Pages:S267-S268, ISSN:0012-186X

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