Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery & Cancer

Research Associate

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7L16Lab BlockCharing Cross Campus





Sam has a 1st class honours degree in Pharmacology from University College London. He went on to complete an MRC funded PhD in Neuroscience within the Sensory and Motor Systems Group in the School of Physiology and Pharmacology at the University of Bristol. His thesis was on the role of endogenous analgesic systems during the development of a neuropathic pain phenotype.

In April 2016, Sam joined Dr Paul Strutton’s lab within the MSk research group ( at Imperial College London. Together, they have been researching motor and sensory systems in health and disease of the musculoskeletal system. Sam is particularly interested in the variability of endogenous analgesia during experimental and clinical persistent pain states and the impact of aging on the development of musculoskeletal pain. He is also investigating novel ways to alleviate persistent pain in sciatica patients with funding from the Pain Relief Foundation.

He is deputy academic lead for year 2 neuroscience on the BSc Medical Biosciences (BMB) degree programme, an MBBS academic tutor (early years) and lectures on the somatosensory system and chronic pain on the MBBS and MSc Translational Neuroscience degree programmes. Sam also supervises numerous undergraduate and postgraduate research project students in the Faculty of Medicine.

Sam is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (AFHEA) and member of the British Pain Society (BPS).




Hughes S, Zhao H, Auvinet E, et al., Attenuation of capsaicin-induced ongoing pain and secondary hyperalgesia during exposure to an immersive virtual reality environment, Pain Reports, ISSN:2471-2531

Hughes SW, Hellyer PJ, Sharp DJ, et al., 2019, Diffusion tensor imaging reveals changes in microstructural integrity along compressed nerve roots that correlate with chronic pain symptoms and motor deficiencies in elderly stenosis patients, Neuroimage: Clinical, Vol:23, ISSN:2213-1582

Hughes S, Grimsey S, Strutton PH, 2018, Primary Motor Cortex Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Modulates Temporal Summation of the Nociceptive Withdrawal Reflex in Healthy Subjects., Pain Med

Hughes SW, Ali M, Sharma P, et al., 2018, Frequency-dependent top-down modulation of temporal summation by anodal transcranial direct-current stimulation of the primary motor cortex in healthy adults, European Journal of Pain, Vol:22, ISSN:1090-3801, Pages:1494-1501

Hughes S, Hickey L, Donaldson LF, et al., 2015, Intrathecal reboxetine suppresses evoked and ongoing neuropathic pain behaviours by restoring spinal noradrenergic inhibitory tone, Pain, Vol:156, ISSN:0304-3959, Pages:328-334

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