Sheffield Institute for
Translational Neuroscience

Dr James Alix BSc(Hons), MBChB, MRCP, PhD

Senior Clinical Lecturer in Neurophysiology,

University of Sheffield

Honorary Consultant Clinical Neurophysiologist,

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Research Interests

My main research focus is on the development of new techniques to diagnose and monitor neuromuscular disorders. I use electrophysiological techniques in both pre-clinical and clinical settings in order to better understand how these diseases start and change over time.     


Current Projects

  • Use of the motor unit number index (MUNIX) to monitor disease progression in motor neurone disease
  • Use of different types of spectroscopy to monitor neuromuscular disease


My work is or has been supported by the following:

  • Medical Research Council

  • Academy of Medical Sciences
  • Motor Neurone Disease Association
  • Ryder Briggs Neuroscience Research Fund
  • Neurocare



Research Team

PhD Students:

  • Maria Plesia (Primary supervisor)
  • Buket Sonbas (co-supervisor; Primary supervisor Prof. Visakan Kadirkamanathan)
  • Dr Nick Verber (co-supervisor; Primary supervisor Prof. Dame Pamela Shaw)



Selected Publications

Alix JJ*, Neuwirth C*, Gelder L, Burkhardt C, Castro J, de Carvalho M, Gawel M, Goedee S, Grosskreutz J, Lenglet T, Moglia C, Omer T, Schrooten M, Nandedkar S, Stalberg E, Barkhaus PE, Furtula J, van Dijk JP, Baldinger R, Costa J, Otto M, Sandberg A, Weber M. Assessment of the reliability of the motor unit size index (MUSIX) in single subject “round-robin” and multi-centre settings (2019). Clin Neurophysiol; 130(5): 666-674.

Alix JJ, Kandler RH, Pang C, Stavroulakis T, Catania S (2019). Comparing the effectiveness of sleep deprivation and melatonin for inducing sleep in paediatric EEG. Dev Med Child Neurol; 61(2): 181-185.

Jenkins TM, Alix JJ, Rao DG, Hoggard N, Bradburn M, Bigley J, McDermott CJ, Wilkinson ID, Shaw PJ (2018). Imaging muscle as a potential biomarker of denervation in motor neuron disease. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry; 89(3): 248-255.

Carlson S, Kandler RH, Moorhouse D, Ponnusamy A, Mordekar SR, Alix JJ (2018). Home video telemetry in children: a comparison to inpatient video telemetry. Seizure; 61: 209-213.

Neuwirth C, Burkhardt C, Alix JJ, Castro J, de Carvalho M, Gawel M, Goedee S, Grosskreutz J, Lenglet T, Moglia C, Omer T, Schrooten M, Weber M (2016). Quality control of motor unit number index (MUNIX) measurements in 6 muscles in a single subject “round robin” setup. PLOS One, 11(5): e0153948.

Alix JJ, Zammit C, Riddle A, Meshul CK, Back SA, Valentino M, Fern R. Central axons preparing to myelinate are highly sensitive to ischemic injury. Ann Neurol. 2012;72(6):936-51

Alix JJ, Domingues AM. White matter synapses: form, function, and dysfunction. Neurology. 2011;76(4):397-404

Alix JJ. Clinician-scientist training: a perspective from across the pond. Ann Neurol. 2010;68(1):119-20

Alix JJ, Fern R. Glutamate receptor-mediated ischemic injury of premyelinated central axons. Ann Neurol. 2009;66(5):682-93

Professional Activities

  • Module Leader, Applied Neuroanatomy & Clinical Neuroscience module, MSc Neurology course, University of Sheffield.
  • Deputy Director of Studies for Phase 3a, MBChB course, University of Sheffield.
  • Ad hoc peer review for journals, including Muscle and Nerve and the European Journal of Neurology.
  • Grant reviewer for Medical Research Council, Health Research Board (Ireland), MND Scotland.


2018 – Present
Senior Clinical Lecturer in Neurophysiology, University of Sheffield
Honorary Consultant Clinical Neurophysiologist, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

2015 – 2018:
NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer in Neurophysiology, University of Sheffield

2012 – 2014:
Specialty Registrar in Clinical Neurophysiology, Yorkshire and the Humber Deanery

2010 – 2012:
NIHR Academic Clinical Fellowship in Core Medical Training/Neurology, University of Sheffield

2008 – 2010:
Academic Foundation Programme, Imperial College, London

2000 – 2008:
MB/PhD programme, University of Leicester Medical School


I studied medicine at Leicester Medical School, undertaking an intercalated BSc in neuroscience (1st class Hons) before moving onto the MB/PhD programme and completing a PhD on the molecular mechanisms of perinatal white matter injury. After graduating I completed academic foundation programme training in London before moving to Sheffield to take up an NIHR academic clinical fellowship in neurology. I then moved into clinical neurophysiology training and completed the final part of my training as an NIHR clinical lecturer.


  • Lord Adrian Prize, British Society for Clinical Neurophysiology, 2017
  • British Society for Clinical Neurophysiology Intercalation Bursary to my student H. McDonough, 2017
  • NIHR Academic Clinical Lectureship, University of Sheffield, 2015
  • NIHR Academic Clinical Fellowship, University of Sheffield, 2010
  • Distinction, Final Professional Examination, University of Leicester, 2008
  • Wellcome Trust Elective Prize, 2008
  • Physiology Society Studentship, 2005
  • Leicester Medical Research Foundation (Medisearch) Studentship, 2004
  • Charles Lawson Award for Intercalated Studies, University of Leicester, 2004

 My students have been awarded the following:

Mr H McDonough (Intercalating BMedSci, 2017-18)

  • Clinical Research Poster Prize, 29th International Symposium on ALS/MND, Glasgow, December 2018.
  • 1st prize, ABN Medical Student Meeting, Manchester, October 2018.
  • BSCN Intercalation Bursary.

Dr N Kyrtata (MSc student 2017)

  •  2nd prize Doctors Academy Conference, Manchester, August 2018.

Ms M Plesia (PhD student, ongoing)

  • NC3Rs Summer School Studentship, July 2018.

Teaching Interests

I am module leader for the Applied Neuroanatomy & Clinical Neuroscience module on the MSc Neurology course. I am also the Deputy Director of Studies for Phase 3a of the medical degree.

I regularly give neurophysiology lectures and demonstrations to medical and postgraduate students. I also provide research supervision to PhD students, intercalating medical students, MSc students and supervise students on SSC attachments. I am also a personal and academic (PATS) tutor for medical students.

I am particularly keen to encourage medical students to undertake research during their time at medical school and welcome any enquiries regarding potential projects.


Department of Neuroscience
Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience
University of Sheffield
Room B35
385a Glossop Road
S10 2HQ

Tel: +44 (0)114 21 59100
Fax: +44 (0)114 22 22290