Professor Gavin Barlow


Professor of Infection

Role at Hull York Medical School

Gavin Barlow is Professor of Infection at Hull York Medical School and the University of York and an Honorary Consultant in Infectious Diseases at Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.


Gavin has more than 17 years of experience in senior clinical and academic practice including in orthopaedic infection, successful leadership of antimicrobial stewardship at Hull University Teaching Hospitals (HUTH) [2005-2018], and international antimicrobial stewardship education. He is currently co-Chief Investigator of two NIHR HTA programme funded trials (BioDriveAFS and MANTRA), was lead applicant (with Professor Matthew Hardman) on HUTH's recent successful bid to the MRC for a PromethION24 (high throughput DNA/RNA sequencer), provided leadership with colleagues in the local research response to COVID-19 and the development of the Infection Research Group (IRG) at HUTH, and has more than 100 peer reviewed publications. Professor Barlow's main clinical interests are orthopaedic infection, outpatient parenteral antibiotic therapy (OPAT), and the management of complex bacterial and healthcare-associated infections. He was the first clinician in the UK to respond to a positive COVID-19 test in clinical practice.


Gavin is a member of the Experimental Medicine and Biomedicine research group.

Research experience is broad, including translational, quantitative, qualitative, and quality improvement methods with a predominant focus on how antibiotics are used and the epidemiology and clinical care of severe infections common in the NHS (see publications). Ongoing research includes: the two NIHR-funded clinical trials mentioned above; the in-vitro effects of combination antibiotic therapy, including beta-lactam combinations; and the serial nature of the skin and oral mycobiome in acute leukaemia patients undergoing intensive chemotherapy. Working cross-site between the University of York and HUTH provides considerable opportunities for clinically focused, inter-disciplinary translational infection research.


Gavin was Phase III (Year 5) Academic Lead at Hull York Medical School, 2019 to 2021 and guided curriculum recovery of this year through the COVID-19 pandemic. He has contributed extensively to all phases of the HYMS undergraduate medicine course since 2004 and was nominated for “Exceptional Contribution to Student Experience Award” and “Undergraduate Medicine Phase II and III Tutor of Excellence Award” in 2021.

Professor Barlow provides high quality supervision and training as evidenced by four trainees ascertaining external prizes and numerous publishing abstracts/articles. He also has editorial experience in innovative antimicrobial prescribing and stewardship education solutions with international impact; for example, Antimicrobial Stewardship: Managing Antibiotic Resistance (week 2 co-lead) and is co-editor of the infection chapter in one of the world’s most recognised undergraduate medical textbooks (Kumar & Clarke).


Full Publications List:

View Professor Barlow's publications on Google Scholar

Selected publications

A review of evidence for pneumococcal vaccination in adults at increased risk of pneumococcal disease: risk group definitions and optimization of vaccination coverage in the United Kingdom. Campling J, et al. Expert Rev Vaccines. 2023 Jan-Dec;22(1):785-800. doi: 10.1080/14760584.2023.2256394. Epub 2023 Sep 11. PMID: 37694398.

Impact of adherence to individual quality-of-care indicators on the prognosis of bloodstream infection due to Staphylococcus aureus: a prospective observational multicentre cohort. Escrihuela-Vidal F, et al; International Staphylococcus Aureus Collaboration Study Group, The European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases Study Group For Bloodstream Infections, Endocarditis And Sepsis. Clin Microbiol Infect. 2023 Apr;29(4):498-505. doi: 10.1016/j.cmi.2022.10.019. Epub 2022 Oct 23. PMID: 36283610.

A multicentre evaluation and expert recommendations of use of the newly developed BioFire Joint Infection polymerase chain reaction panel. Saeed K, et al. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2023 Feb;42(2):169-176. doi: 10.1007/s10096-022-04538-w. Epub 2022 Dec 7. PMID: 36474096; PMCID: PMC9836977.

Misdiagnoses in the Context of Suspected Pandemic Influenza or Coronavirus Disease 2019: A Systematic Review. Bray L, et al. Open Forum Infect Dis. 2022 Oct 5;9(11):ofac515. doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofac515. PMID: 36340740; PMCID: PMC9619634.

PRO: Biomarker surveillance for invasive fungal infections without antifungal prophylaxis could safely reduce antifungal use in acute leukaemia. Taynton T, Barlow G, Allsup D. JAC Antimicrob Resist. 2022 Jul 22;4(4):dlac074. doi: 10.1093/jacamr/dlac074. PMID: 35873180; PMCID: PMC9305519.

Evaluation of in vitro activity of fosfomycin, and synergy in combination, in Gram-negative bloodstream infection isolates in a UK teaching hospital. Suich J, et al. J Med Microbiol. 2022 Apr;71(4). doi: 10.1099/jmm.0.001524. PMID: 35476672.

Case Report: The effect of intravenous and oral antibiotics on the gut microbiome and breath volatile organic compounds over one year. Shahi F, et al. Wellcome Open Res. 2022 Dec 5;7:50. doi: 10.12688/wellcomeopenres.17450.3. PMID: 36874581; PMCID: PMC9975432.

Consensus-based antimicrobial resistance and stewardship competencies for UK undergraduate medical students. McMaster D, et al; Keep Antibiotics Working (KAW) group. JAC Antimicrob Resist. 2020 Dec 4;2(4):dlaa096. doi: 10.1093/jacamr/dlaa096. PMID: 34223048; PMCID: PMC8210211.

A systematic review of the single-stage treatment of chronic osteomyelitis. Pincher B, et al. J Orthop Surg Res. 2019 Nov 28;14(1):393. doi: 10.1186/s13018-019-1388-2. PMID: 31779664; PMCID: PMC6883574.

Oral versus Intravenous Antibiotics for Bone and Joint Infections (OVIVA), HK Li, et al. N Engl J Med. 2019 Jan 31;380(5):425-436. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1710926.

Escherichia coli bloodstream infection outcomes and preventability: a six-month prospective observational study. Lillie PJ, Johnson G, Ivan M, Barlow GD, Moss PJ. J Hosp Infect. 2019 May 23. pii: S0195-6701(19)30220-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jhin.2019.05.007.

Clinical challenges in antimicrobial resistance. Barlow G. Nature Microbiology. 2018 Mar;3(3):258-260. doi: 10.1038/s41564-018-0121-y

Development and impact of a massive open on-line course [MOOC] for antimicrobial stewardship. Sneddon J, Barlow G, Bradley S, Brink A, Chandy SJ, Nathwani D. J Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 2018 Apr 1;73(4):1091-1097. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkx493

Adjunctive rifampin for adults with Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia. Thwaites GE, et al on behalf of the United Kingdom Clinical Infection Research Group (UKCIRG). Lancet. 2017 Dec 14. pii: S0140-6736(17)32456-X.

Economic evaluations of interventions to prevent healthcare-associated infections. Craig D, O’Connor J, Duffy S, Barlow G, et al. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Stockholm: ECDC; 2017:

Long Term Mortality Following Blood Stream Infection. Lillie P, Allen J, Hall C, Walsh C, Adams K, Thaker H, Moss P, Barlow G. Clinical Microbiology Infection 2012 Nov 15. doi: 10.1111/1469-0691.12101

Identifying barriers to the rapid administration of appropriate antibiotics in community-acquired pneumonia. Barlow G, Nathwani D, Myers E, Sullivan F, Stevens N, Duffy R, Davey P. J Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 2008 Feb; 61: 442-51.

Reducing door to antibiotic time in community-acquired pneumonia: controlled before and after evaluation and cost-effectiveness analysis. Barlow G, Nathwani D, Williams F, Ogston S, Winter J, Jones M, Slane P, Myers E, Sullivan F, Stevens N, Duffey R, Lowden K, Davey P. Thorax 2007; 62: 67-74.

The CURB65 pneumonia severity score outperforms generic sepsis and early warning scores in predicting mortality in community-acquired pneumonia. Barlow G, Nathwani D, Davey P. Thorax 2007; 62: 253-9.


Gavin collaborates with colleagues within the Infection Research Group at HUTH and at the universities of Hull and York and provides leadership within several interdisciplinary, inter-institution research collaboratives.

Postgraduate research supervision
  • Academic foundation
  • Academic clinical fellow
  • MSc
  • MD
  • PhD

Professor Barlow has supervised numerous undergraduate and postgraduate healthcare trainees resulting in more than 40 publications (mostly) and/or published abstracts.

External roles

Gavin has an established external engagement profile, including sustained working with organisations with national/international influence and research funders, including:

  • Expert case reviewer on the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death (NCEPOD) for Community-Acquired Pneumonia, 2023
  • Inaugural research editor, JAC-AMR, 2018-2020
  • Executive Officer for Antimicrobial Stewardship and Surveillance (elected), British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (2016-2019)
  • English Surveillance Programme for Utilisation & Resistance (ESPAUR) Start Smart Then Focus Implementation Subgroup (invited) – Antimicrobial Stewardship Toolkit for English Hospitals (Public Health England). See: Antimicrobial stewardship: start smart then focus - UK Health Security Agency (March 2015)
  • Council Member (elected), British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (January 2009-2012 and 2014-2016)
  • Member (invited), British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy guideline group on intra-cardiac electronic device infections – GB wrote the Epidemiology, Microbiology and Risk Factors section of this national clinical guideline (2014 to 2015)
  • Infection expert representative on the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death (NCEPOD) for lower limb amputations (invited), a national audit of the quality of care for patients undergoing lower limb amputation (2014) See: Lower Limb Amputation: Working Together - National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death
Honours and awards

May 2001: Young Investigators Prize, 3rd European Federation of Internal Medicine (EFIM) Conference, Edinburgh Conference Centre. Unnecessary Peripheral Intravenous Catheterisation on an Acute Medical Admissions Unit. Barlow GD, Palniapan S, Jones MC, Nathwani D.

March 2009: First Prize in Patient Safety category for Antibiotic Stewardship at Hull And East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, 2005-2009, Humber and East Riding of Yorkshire NHS Service Improvement Day

April 2011: Golden Hearts award for the Outpatient Parenteral Antibiotic Therapy service in the Outstanding Customer Service category

June 2016:  Nominated, Educational Supervisor of the Year, Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust

June 2021: Nominated, “Exceptional Contribution to Student Experience Award” AND “Undergraduate Medicine Phase II and III Tutor of Excellence Award”