Dr Clive McKimmie


Senior Lecturer

Role at Hull York Medical School

I am a Senior Lecturer who leads an interdisciplinary research team at the Skin Research Centre, University of York. This research is addressing fundamental questions about infection and immunity and provide a strategic link between infectious disease, skin biology, immunology and global health.

We investigate the key, medically relevant interactions that occur between disease-causing viruses, their vectors and the mammalian host. We have a particular interest in viruses that are spread by mosquitoes and sandflies, and how host responses in the skin modulates susceptibility to them. These viruses represent an important class of emerging infections that constitute an increasing threat to human and animal health.

A second major theme of our research is increasing our understanding of inflammatory diseases that have a high clinical burden, with recent publications on psoriasis, systemic sclerosis and multiple sclerosis. To achieve this, we have established close collaborative links with clinical researchers at NHS teaching hospitals, who are providing valuable expertise and access to large patient cohorts and clinical samples.

Our priorities for research

• undertake leading research in infectious and inflammatory disease
• identify new mechanisms of immune function in skin that define disease outcome
• explore how host, virus and environmental derived factors combine to define susceptibility to virus and skin inflammatory disease
• identify new therapies and vaccines that target these responses to improve clinical outcome

We have a keen interest in public engagement, which includes interacting with a variety of media outlets who have since reported their work (e.g. Scientific American, Nature, Science, MailOnline, New York Observer, BBC, Time Magazine, New Scientist and The Conversation). In 2020, in response to the COVID-19 lockdown, I co-founded and continue to co-chair the “International virtual seminars on arbovirus biology”; https://twitter.com/ArbovirusSIn 2024, I was recruited to the new Skin Research Centre at the University of York. The University of York is a world-leading centre for infectious disease and immunology research. My role is providing new expertise that bridges several key disciplines, and providing new opportunities to partner with industry, other stakeholders and clinicians.


BSc degree at the University of Nottingham in (Molecular Cell Biology).
Wellcome-Trust funded PhD at the University of Edinburgh (Neuroimmunology).
Post-doc, Professor Gerry Graham, University of Glasgow (inflammatory chemokine biology)
Lord Kelvin Adam Smith fellowship, University of Glasgow (immunology/virology/vector biology)
University Academic Fellowship, then Associate Professor, University of Leeds (translational medicine)
Senior Lecturer, University of York (Skin Research Centre)

Areas of Expertise

skin biology
virus infection


We have a particular interest in the host immune responses to viruses spread by mosquitoes. These viruses infect many millions of people each year and include viruses that cause Zika, dengue and chikungunya. Most such infections are usually found in the tropics, but a changing climate and globalisation mean their range is spreading at an alarming rate. There are many different types of these viruses and it is hard to predict which virus will cause the next outbreak. It is challenging to develop and stockpile medicines for each type of infection.

Innate immune responses by the host are crucial for effective anti-viral defences, yet the tissue-specific basis by which they are coordinated in vivo and their modulation by confounding environmental variables remains poorly defined. This particularly applies to infection by mosquito-borne viruses at the skin inoculation site. Inoculation of virus by mosquitoes as they bite the skin is an important stage of all such infections. We have recently identified key inflammatory pathways that are activated in the skin during biting/infection, that are important determinants of the subsequent systemic course and clinical outcome of infection.

Together this work will characterise important aspects of the skin response to infection, and during inflammation, that will enable the development of novel, broadly-applicable therapeutic and public health strategies for limiting disease severity.

For up to date publications see here.


Chemokines and inflammation

Prof Gerry Graham, University of Glasgow
Dr Kave Shams, Consultant Dermatologist, University of Leeds
Dr Francesco Del Galdo, Consultant Rheumatologist, University of Leeds


Prof John Fazakerley, University of Melbourne
Dr Alain Kohl, MRC Centre for Virus Research
Prof Andres Merits, University of Tartu, Estonia

Vector biology

Dr Emilie Pondeville, MRC Centre for Virus Research
Prof Luke Alphey, University of York

Vascular Biology

Dr Paola Campagnolo, University of Surrey

Clive is a member of the Skin Research Centre.

Honours and awards

Lord Kelvin Adam Smith Fellowship, University of Glasgow.

University Academic Fellowship, University of Leeds.