RICHARD DYBALL Biological Sciences

Richard Dyball image
Biological Sciences
College positions
Emeritus Fellow
University positions
Emeritus Reader in Hypothalmic Electrophysiology
Email Address


Before retirement I worked on the endocrine hypothalamus. The commonly held view is that the brain is the organ of the body that you think with but it does a great deal more than this. The hypothalamus is important because it takes care of the regulation of metabolism, blood pressure, body temperature and many other functions that you do not have to think about. If you did have to worry about such issues you would not have time to think at all. I recorded from single nerve cells and my recent interest has been to try to work out how nerve impulses carry coded information.

I also taught physiology and contributed to an early version of a physiology curriculum designed for medical students (see (Medical-curriculum.pdf (

For many years I have also maintained an active interest in the teaching of anatomy (including veterinary anatomy). My lasting legacy to anatomy teaching in Cambridge was in the introduction of the routine use of prosections to teach areas of anatomy that are not easy for students to dissect. I am a member of the Court of Examiners for the Royal College of Surgeons and was heavily involved in the development of a core curriculum in anatomy published by the Anatomical Society (see The Anatomical Society core regional anatomy syllabus for undergraduate medicine - Smith - 2016 - Journal of Anatomy - Wiley Online Library.).