Professor Alastair Buchan (born 16 October 1955) is a neurologist and researcher in stroke medicine. His main research interest has always been how to make neuroprotection a reality in the clinic. Since October 2008 he has served as the Head of the Medical Sciences Division at the University of Oxford.
Buchan was educated at Repton School in Derbyshire and graduated in 1980 from his medical studies at the University of Cambridge, University of Oxford and Harvard University.
His post-graduate medical training was undertaken with Sir David Weatherall in Oxford. Buchan completed his neurological training in North America, with Henry J. M. Barnett in London, Ontario and in stroke with Fred Plum in New York. Subsequently, Buchan held staff positions as a consultant neurologist in London and Ottawa before becoming the Heart and Stroke Foundation Professor in Stroke Research in Calgary, Alberta in 1995.
During his ten years in Calgary, Buchan built up a team which established a fully comprehensive regional Stroke Programme leading CASES, ASPECTS and FASTER. When he returned to Oxford in 2005 he left Calgary with an Acute Stroke Imaging Centre, an Experimental Imaging Centre and the Clinical Stroke Programme, which facilitate translation of the experimental research work in the laboratory to the clinical setting. For his services, the University of Calgary awarded Buchan an honorary Degrees of Laws (LLD) in May 2009.
Buchan was elected to the Chair of Clinical Geratology at the University of Oxford in July 2004. Since 2005, his successes in Oxford have included obtaining funding from the MRC, the Leducq Foundation and the Dunhill Foundation to set up an Acute Stroke Programme in collaboration with Peter Jezzard and Peter Rothwell. He is the Translational Research Director for the UK Stroke Research Network. Buchan has led the Oxford University bid for a Wellcome Clinical Research facility and has successfully obtained funding for the new Acute Vascular Imaging Centre (AVIC).
In 2007 Buchan was appointed Director for the Oxford Biomedical Research Centre, one of the five comprehensive centres for the new English NIHR. At the same time, he was charged with the task of heading the John Radcliffe Hospital Division of the Nuffield Department of Medicine. He established and chaired the cabinet of the UK Biomedical Research Directors for the other five centres in the country.
In April 2007 he was made a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci).
This was followed by Buchan's appointment to the Headship of the Medical Sciences Division at the University of Oxford as of October 2008.
Professor Buchan is Professor of Stroke Medicine and a fellow of Corpus Christi College, a college made up of over 240 undergraduate and 115 graduate students in various disciplines including medicine, health, science, social science and humanities.
His belief in mentoring future and current medical students includes acting as a Governor at Repton School since 2005 where he is developing a science priory to encourage greater interest in science.
His additional commitments include his role as a Member of Council, University of Oxford; Non-Executive Director of the Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals; Trustee of the Jenner Institute; Nuffield Medical Trustee and member of the Board of the Charite Hospital Stroke Programme in Berlin. He is the Senior Member of the Osler House Club and a Member of the Athenaeum Club in London.