Professor Thomas B. Bolton, BSc PhD BVetMed MA ILTM MRCVS FMedSci MAEFBPharmacolS(Hon) Hon DSc.

Professor Emeritus, St George's University of London, London, United Kingdom


As a trained vet, Tom Bolton entered smooth muscle research through PhD study with the much-respected Bill Bowman. He soon showed his flare for independence and at Oxford was inspired by Edith Bülbring who pioneered electrophysiological studies of smooth muscle activity. Soon after this he obtained a position at St George’s Hospital Medical School, London - a hot-bed of electrophysiology and theoretical pharmacology. He went on to head the Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Pharmacology for many years and made it a world-famous centre for smooth muscle research and a focal point for visitors from across the globe.

Throughout this time he has shown us the importance of grasping hold of new developments boldly and is perhaps best recognised for his early introduction of patch-clamp recording to smooth muscle, which revolutionised the field. Patch-clamp, calcium indicators, confocal microscopy and recombinant DNA technology - all part of Tom’s lab - have provided powerful tools and critical links between the smooth muscle and ion channel fields.