• 70 Cowcaddens Road, Glasgow Caledonian University

    G4 0BA Glasgow

    United Kingdom

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Personal profile

Research interests

David is a reader in musculoskeletal health within the Research Centre for Health at GCU, joining in 2022 from Edinburgh Napier University where he was formally associate professor of physiotherapy. He completed his PhD at the University of Edinburgh and worked there for 10 years as a postdoctoral researcher and then fellow and principle investigator. His primary research interests are in measuring outcomes/physical function in osteoarthritis and musculoskeletal injury/disease, orthopaedic/rehabilitative interventions, predictive modelling, evaluating the psychometric properties of outcome questionnaires, and more generally in research methodology and clinical trials. Wider interests transcend musculoskeletal sciences and rehabilitation, from muscle stem cells and regeneration to kinematics and biomechanics.

He is an active researcher with honorary fellowships at the University of Edinburgh (orthopaedics), and at the University of Aberdeen (where he collaborates with the epidemiology group on osteoarthritis and pain research). He has collaborated on >£5 million of research funding from Versus Arthritis, EPSRC, NIHR and industry partners which has resulted in >90 publications to date.

He has worked on various interventional trials. Recently completed studies include the TRIO RCT, which was a major UK trial evaluating whether physiotherapy targeted to patients predicted to perform poorly following total knee replacement could improve outcomes (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33051212/), and the long-term follow up of the TRIMAX RCT, which evaluated knee replacement outcomes (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32228078/).

He is currently leading the ROBOTA project, evaluating patient outcomes following robotic-assisted hip and knee surgery, and leads the rehabilitation arm of the NIHR funded MOTION RCT with partners in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Warwick. This major trial is looking at whether joint realignment surgery outperforms physiotherapy management in young patients with knee osteoarthritis; recruitment is planned to open in early 2023.

Alongside Edinburgh and Aberdeen, David has active research collaborations with colleagues at Cardiff University (wearable technology), the University of Zurich and the Medical University of Innsbruck (patient reported outcomes and methodological research), and at Oxford University and the Virginia Commonwealth University (rehabilitation trials and predictive modelling).

He sits on the Scotland hub of the Council for Allied Health Professions Research, the executive committee (as treasurer) of the British Orthopaedic Research Society, and is part of the EPSRC Osteoarthritis Technology network. For a number of years, he has been associate journal editor for BMC musculoskeletal disorders.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

External positions

Treasurer, British Orthopaedic Research Society

30 Sep 202130 Sep 2024


  • Musculoskeletal System
  • Orthopedics
  • Physiotherapy
  • Health Services Research
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative


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