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Professor Phil Winn

Research Professor

Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

Personal statement

Professor Philip Winn and his research team explore brain–behaviour relationships with particular interest in structures deep in brain. Over several years they have developed the general hypothesis that relatively high order processes are represented much lower in the brain than generally supposed. This idea of "higher" functions in "lower" structures is consistent with the notion of distributed processing and representation; with the concept of layered neural architectures; and with evolutionary approaches to brain functioning.

Careful examination of behaviour is important because many brain disorders are described in terms of altered behaviour – changes in the quality of movement or changed patterns of action are often the first signs of neural dysfunction. Phil’s lab looks at how action-outcome associations are formed – that is, how we learn about relationships between our actions and the consequences of those actions – and how reward is processed through integrated neural circuits. This is part of a programme of research into brain–behaviour relationships that contributes to our understanding of addiction, Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia, all of which show problems with the selection and execution of actions in one way or another.

Phil is an elected Fellow of both the Royal Society of Biology and the Association for Psychological Science in the USA. He began his career at St Andrews, becoming Dean of Science and then a Vice Principal. He joined Strathclyde in January 2010 as a Deputy Principal with a brief to develop the University Strategic Plan 2011-2015 after which he served as Head of SIPBS until 2015. He is currently Chair of Medical Research Scotland; is a Board member of the UK Quality Assurance Agency (QAA); and is an international adviser to the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning (NFETL) in Ireland. He is also Honorary Professor of Psychology at the University of St Andrews.


The cellular diversity of the pedunculopontine nucleus : relevance to behavior in health and aspects of Parkinson's disease
Pienaar Ilse S., Vernon Anthony, Winn Philip
Neuroscientist Vol 23, pp. 415-431, (2017)
Qualitative evaluation of a practice-based experience pilot program for master of pharmacy students in Scotland
Hendry Gillian, Winn Philip, Wiggins Sally, Turner Christopher J.
American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education Vol 80, (2016)
Description and evaluation of an MPharm practice-based experience pilot program
Winn Philip, Turner Christopher J.
American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education Vol 80, (2016)
The pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus - A functional hypothesis from the comparative literature
Gut Nadine K, Winn Philip
Movement Disorders Vol 31, pp. 615-624, (2016)
Deep brain stimulation of different pedunculopontine targets in a novel rodent model of parkinsonism
Gut Nadine K., Winn Philip
Journal of Neuroscience Vol 35, pp. 4792-4803, (2015)
Selective lesions of the cholinergic neurons within the posterior pedunculopontine do not alter operant learning or nicotine sensitization
MacLaren Duncan A. A., Wilson David I. G., Winn Philip
Brain Structure and Function, (2015)

more publications


BB/J013854/1 BBSRC DPT Studentships (with Glasgow University) | Fullerton, Josephine Linda
Winn, Philip (Principal Investigator) Pickard, Benjamin (Co-investigator) Fullerton, Josephine Linda (Research Co-investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2012 - 31-Mar-2017
Chair and Research for Interprofessional learning in Medical and Pharmacy Education
Winn, Philip (Principal Investigator)
Period 17-Apr-2015 - 17-Apr-2015
Maximising Translational Durability II: Drug Discovery and In Vitro Diagnostics (Confidence in Concept 2013)
Winn, Philip (Principal Investigator)
Period 01-Mar-2014 - 31-Dec-2018
EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Medical Devices and Health Technologies
Connolly, Patricia (Principal Investigator) Black, Richard (Co-investigator) Conway, Bernard (Co-investigator) Graham, Duncan (Co-investigator) Hunter, Iain (Co-investigator) Mathieson, Keith (Co-investigator) Ulijn, Rein (Co-investigator) Winn, Philip (Co-investigator)
Period 01-Apr-2014 - 30-Sep-2022
The provision of clinical input by pharmacist to pharmacy educational programmes to support child and adolescent psychiatry Yorkhill Hospital
Winn, Philip (Principal Investigator) Coombs, Graham (Co-investigator)
Period 01-Jan-2008 - 31-Dec-2016
Maximising Translational Durability (MRC Confidence In Concept 2012)
Winn, Philip (Principal Investigator)
Period 05-Feb-2013 - 05-Aug-2014

more projects


Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences
Hamnett Wing John Arbuthnott Building

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