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Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing

Leadership team

MICRA has an Institute Executive Director and six co-directors, all senior academics at The University of Manchester and experts in the field of ageing:

Professor Debora Price, Institute Executive Director

(Social Gerontology)

Professor Debora Price is a social gerontologist and an international leader on pensions, inequalities and poverty in later life. Her primary research interest is in the sociology of money over the life-course specialising in the study of funding later life. Formerly a barrister, Debbie joined the University of Manchester in 2016 from Kings College London. From 2016 – 2019 she has been elected President of the British Society of Gerontology. 

Professor Alistair Burns

(Old Age Psychiatry)

Professor Alistair Burns is a consultant old age psychiatrist and National Clinical Director for Dementia in England. His research interests are in mental health problems of older people, particularly dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Recent research papers have looked at cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease, behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia and drug repositioning for Alzheimer’s disease. He is Editor of the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, Assistant Editor of the British Journal of Psychiatry, and is on the Editorial Boards of International Psychogeriatrics and Advances in Psychiatric Treatment.

Professor Dean Jackson

(Cell Biology)

Professor Dean Jackson is a cell biologist and researches how cells change as they age. Deans looks at the structures by which the human genome folds to fit inside the cell’s nucleus, and how this impacts on the workings of the cell’s nucleus as cells age. Work in his laboratory focuses on mutations in DNA sequences and changes in gene expression through ageing, and how they related to decline in how cells can cope with stress. This includes studying DNA damage and checkpoint pathways focussed on ATR and p53, inflammatory pathways focussed on NF-kappaB, metabolic stress pathways, and notably the flow of information through these stress response networks which is frequently altered during diseases.

Professor James Nazroo


Professor James Nazroo is a sociologist and international authority on social determinants of health and wellbeing in later life. He leads a 5 year research project ‘Inequalities in later life frailty and wellbeing’ funded by the UK research councils’ Lifelong Health and Wellbeing programme. James is interested in how inequalities are transmitted across the lifecourse, and in patterns of retirement, and social and civic participation. James also specialises in longitudinal surveys of health and retirement. He helps lead the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA), an ongoing study of people aged 50 and over.

Dr Neil Pendleton

(Geriatric Medicine)

Dr Neil Pendleton is a consultant orthogeriatrician and senior lecturer in geriatric medicine whose research background spans gerontology, geriatrics, neuropsychology and molecular biology. He has a wide range of research expertise in supporting large cohort longitudinal studies of ageing in the UK and EU including the Dyne Steel DNA archive for cognitive genetics in older adults and genome wide association study of cognitive ageing. Neil continues to research around cognitive ageing, relationships between emotional and cognitive health in late life and transitions between normal and pathological cognitive impairment. He has developed a focus on investigating the interaction between genotype and phenotype in human subjects to explain trajectories of ageing performance and wellbeing.