Professional background

Consultant urological surgeon & clinical lead.

Professor John Kelly is a consultant urological surgeon specialising in robotic surgery for bladder and prostate cancer. He is the lead for the London Cancer Urology Surgery Centre and the robotic surgery programme at UCLH. John is the professor of uro-oncology at UCL and his research group explore how new therapies for bladder and prostate cancer can improve outcomes for patients.

John Kelly is the Clinical Lead for urology at Westmoreland Street Hospital. The department is one the largest in Europe and delivers cutting edge surgery using the latest technologies The position, working with teams across the many different aspects of urology and leaders in the field is highly rewarding.

John moved to UCLH in 2009 from Cambridge University having worked at Addenbrookes in complex cancer surgery and as a fellow at the Cornell University Hospital, New York. He is known internationally for his pioneering work in robotic surgery and is the director of the Chitra Sethia Minimal Access Centre at UCLH which trains robotic surgeons from the UK and abroad. John has been the chairman of the UK National Cancer Research Institute, Bladder Clinical Studies Group and is currently the chairman of the Scientific Committee of The Urology Foundation. John holds the Orchid chair of male genito-urinary oncology with the Orchid Charity.

Research interests

John leads a research group at UCL and embeds high quality research within surgical clinical trials to bring cutting edge technologies into mainstream practice.

In cancer tissues, we identify genomic alterations in DNA which can improve cancer detection and the selection of therapies to enhance outcomes for patients with bladder and prostate cancer. Our clinical trials portfolio extends from early phase proof of concept to large, phase III multi-centre, randomised controlled trials.

Current trials include:

HIVEC-II: A phase II, open label, multi-center, randomised controlled trial comparing hyperthermia plus mitomycin to mitomycin alone, in patients with intermediate risk mon-muscle invasive bladder cancer.

CALIBER: Phase II randomised feasibility study of chemoresection and surgical management in low risk, non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer.

PHOTO: PHOTOdynamic versus white light-guided treatment of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer: A randomised trial of clinical and cost-effectiveness.

DETECT-I: A prospective observational study to determine the negative predictive value of UroMark to rule out the presence of bladder cancer in patients with haematuria.

DETECT-II: A multicentre observational study design to determine the sensitivity of the UroMark assay, a urine test, to detect new and recurrent low, intermediate and high grade bladder cancer.


  1. Tan WS, Sridhar A, Goldstraw M, Zacharakis E, Nathan S, Hines J, Cathcart P, Briggs T, Kelly JD.Robot-assisted intracorporeal pyramid neobladder. BJU Int. 2015 Nov;116(5):771-9. doi: 10.1111/bju.13189. Epub 2015 Jul 14 
  2. Richards T, Clevenger B, Keidan J, Collier T, Klein AA, Anker SD, Kelly JD. PREVENTT: preoperative intravenous iron to treat anaemia in major surgery: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial.Trials. 2015 Jun 4;16:254. doi: 10.1186/s13063-015-0774-2.
  3. Cathcart  P, Sridhara A, Ramachandan N, Hines J, Briggs, Nathan S,  Kelly JD. Achieving quality assurance of prostate cancer surgery during reorganisation of cancerservices.  European Urology Eur Urol. 2015 Mar 11. pii: S0302-2838(15)00193-1. doi: 10.1016/j.eururo.2015.02.028. [Epub ahead of print]
  4. Feber A, Arya M, de Winter P, Saqib M, Nigam R, Malone PR, Tan WS, Rodney S, Lechner M, Freeman A, Jameson C, Muneer A, Beck S, Kelly JD. Epigenetics markers of metastasis and HPV induced tumourigenesis in penile cancer.Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Dec 23. pii: clincanres.1656.2014. [Epub ahead of print]
  5. Blazeby J M, Hall E, Aaronson N K, Lloyd L, Waters R, Kelly J D and Fayers P. Validation and Reliability Testing of the EORTC QLQ-NMIBC24 Questionnaire Module to Assess Patient-reported Outcomes in Non–Muscle-invasive Bladder Cancer.  European Urology December 2014; 66(1):1148-1156.
  6. P. Gurung, A. Veerakumarasivam, M. Williamson, N. Counsell, N.D.James W.S. Tan, A. feber, S. Crabb, S. Short, A.Freeman, T.Powles, P. Hoskin, C. West. J.D Kelly.  Loss of Expression of the Tumour Suppressor Gene AIMP3 Predicts Survival Following Radiotherapy in Muscle-Invasive Bladder Cancer. Int J Cancer. 2015 Feb 1;136(3):709-20. doi: 10.1002/ijc.29022. Epub 2014 Jul 22
  7. Feber A, Guilhamon P, Lechner M, Fenton T, Wilson GA, Thirlwell C, , Thirlwell C , Morris TJ , Flanagan AM , Teschendorff AE , Kelly JD , Beck S. Using high-density DNA methylation arrays to profile copy number alterations. Genome Biol. 2014 Feb 3;15(2):R30. PubMed PMID: 24490765. Epub 2014/02/05. Eng.
  8. Allan M, Ourselin S, Thompson S, Hawkes DJ, Kelly J, Stoyanov D. Toward detection and localization of instruments in minimally invasive surgery. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2013 Apr;60(4):1050-8. doi: 10.1109/TBME.2012.2229278.
  9. Powles T, Kelly JD. Innovation: London Cancer-multidisciplinary approach to urological cancer. Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 2013 Nov;10(11):609-10. doi: 10.1038/nrclinonc.2013.179. Epub 2013 Oct 8
  10. James Buxton, Henry Taylor, Gillian Basnett, Raj Nigam, Suks Minhas, John Kelly, Asif Muneer. Comparison of robot-assisted and laparoscopic pelvic lymphadenectomy in penile cancer patients with stage N2/N3 inguinal disease. International Journal of Surgery Volume 11, Issue 7, August 2013, Pages 564
  11. Arya M, Kalsi J, Kelly J, Muneer A. Malignant and premalignant lesions of the penis. BMJ. 2013;346:f1149. PubMed PMID: 23468288. Epub 2013/03/08. eng.
  12. Pal, P., Roy, A., Moore, G., Muzslay, M., Lee, E., Alder, S., Wilson, P., Powles, T., Wilson, P., Kelly, J. Keypad mobile phones are associated with a significant increased risk of microbial contamination compared to touch screen phones.Journal of Infection Preventions. volume 14, issue 2, year 2013, pp. 65 - 68
  13. Arya M, Li R, Pegler K, Sangar V, Kelly JD, Minhas S, Muneer A, Coleman MP. Long-term trends in incidence, survival and mortality of primary penile cancer in England.Cancer Causes Control. 2013 Dec;24(12):2169-76. doi: 10.1007/s10552-013-0293-y. Epub 2013 Oct 8.
  14. A, Powles T, Sullivan M, Hines J, Kelly J. Molecular aspects of upper tract urothelial carcinoma. Patel N, Arya M, Muneer Urol Oncol. 2013 Feb 18. doi:pii: S1078-1439(12)00348-1. 10.1016/j.urolonc.2012.10.002.
  15. Malignant and premalignant lesions of the penis. Arya M, Kalsi J, Kelly J, Muneer A. BMJ. 2013 Mar 6;346:f1149. doi: 10.1136/bmj.f11
  16. Kelly JD, Dudderidge TJ, Wollenschlaeger A, Okoturo O, Burling K, Tulloch F, Halsall I, Prevost T, Prevost AT, Vasconcelos JC, Robson W, Leung Y, Vasdev N, Pickard RS, Williams GH, Stoeber K. Bladder cancer diagnosis and identification of clinically significant disease by combined urinary detection of mcm5 and nuclear matrix protein 22. PLoS One. 2012;7(7):e40305. Epub 2012 Jul 9.
  17. Roy A, Pal P, Arya M, Persad R, Kelly JD, Feneley MR. Photodynamic diagnostic cystoscopy. BJU Int. 2012 Sep;110(6):914-7.
  18. Kelly JD, Hall E. Boxing bladder cancer with COX-2-specific inhibition. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2011 Oct;4(10):1534-5. Epub 2011 Sep 6.
  19. Yoshimatsu M, Toyokawa G, Hayami S, Unoki M, Tsunoda T, Field HI, Kelly JD, Neal DE, Maehara Y, Ponder BA, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R. Dysregulation of PRMT1 and PRMT6, Type I arginine methyltransferases, is involved in various types of human cancers. Int J Cancer. 2011 Feb 1;128(3):562-73.
  20. Hayami S, Kelly JD, Cho HS, Yoshimatsu M, Unoki M, Tsunoda T, Field HI, Neal DE, Yamaue H, Ponder BA, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R. Overexpression of LSD1 contributes to human carcinogenesis through chromatin regulation in various cancers. Int J Cancer. 2011 Feb 1;128(3)
  21. Cathcart PJ, van der Meulen J, Emberton M, Kelly J. Volume-mortality for cystectomy. Centralisation of cancer services vindicated. BMJ. 2010 Jun 22;340:c3336. doi: 10.1136/bmj.c3336.
  22. Hewes JC, Kelly J, Hashemi M. Buried penis in super obesity: a technique for urethral catheterization under direct vision. Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2011 May-Jun;7(3):332. Epub 2011 Feb 4..
  23. Hayami S, Kelly JD, Cho HS, Yoshimatsu M, Unoki M, Tsunoda T, Field HI, Neal DE, Yamaue H, Ponder BA, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R. Overexpression of LSD1 contributes to human carcinogenesis through chromatin regulation in various cancers. Int J Cancer. 2010 Mar 23.
  24. Yoshimatsu M, Toyokawa G, Hayami S, Unoki M, Tsunoda T, Field HI, Kelly JD, Neal DE, Maehara Y, Ponder BA, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R. Dysregulation of PRMT1 and PRMT6, Type I arginine methyltransferases, is involved in various types of human cancers. Int J Cancer. 2010 Apr 5. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 20473859
  25. Hayami S, Yoshimatsu M, Veerakumarasivam A, Unoki M, Iwai Y, Tsunoda T, Field HI, Kelly JD, Neal DE, Yamaue H, Ponder BA, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R.  Overexpression of the JmjC histone demethylase KDM5B in human carcinogenesis: involvement in the proliferation of cancer cells through the E2F/RB pathway.Mol Cancer. 2010 Mar 13;9:59.
  26. Bunce C, Ayres BE, Griffiths TR, Mostafid H, Kelly J, Persad R, Kockelbergh R. The role of hexylaminolaevulinate in the diagnosis and follow-up of non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer.BJU Int. 2010 Feb;105 Suppl 2:2-7.
  27. Unoki M, Kelly JD, Neal DE, Ponder BAJ, Nakamura Y, Hamamoto R. UHRF1 is a novel molecular marker for diagnosis and the prognosis of bladder cancer. Br J Cancer. 2009 Jul 7;101(1):98-105.
  28. Kelly JD, Fawcett D, Goldberg L. Assessment and investigation of non-visible haematuria in the primary care setting.  BMJ 2009;338:a3021
  29. Watson JA, Burling K, Fitzpatrick P, Kay E, Kelly J, Fitzpatrick JM, Dervan PA, McCann A. Urinary insulin-like growth factor 2 identifies the presence of urothelial carcinoma of the bladder. BJU Int. 2009 Mar;103(5):694-7.
  30. Biswas S;Kelly J;Eisen T Title Cytoreductive Nephrectomy in Metastatic Clear-Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma: Perspectives in the Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor Era . Oncologist 2009 14(1):52-59
  31. Abhi Veerakumarasivam, Leonard D. Goldstein, Kasra Saeb-Parsy, Helen E. Scott, Anne Warren, Natalie P. Thorne, Ian G. Mills, Ashok Venkitaraman, David E. Neal and John D. KellyAURKA overexpression accompanies dysregulation of DNA-damage response genes in invasive urothelial cell carcinoma.  Cell Cycle. 2008 Nov. 7;22 :27 - 35
  32. Saeb-Parsy K, Veerakumarasivam A, Wallard MJ, Thorne N, Kawano Y, Murphy G, Neal DE, Mills IG, Kelly JD.  MT1-MMP regulates urothelial cell invasion via transcriptional regulation of Dickkopf-3. Br J Cancer. 2008 Jul 29.
  33. Veerakumarasivam A, Warren A, Wallard MJ, Scott HE, Neal DE, Collins VP and Kelly JD.  High-Resolution Array-Based Comparative Genomic Hybridization of Bladder Cancers Identifies Mouse Double Minute 4 (MDM4) as an Amplification Target Exclusive of MDM2 and TP53.Clin Cancer Res. 2008 May 1;14(9):2527-34.
  34. Dovedi SJ, Kirby JA, Atkins H, Davies BR, Kelly JD. Celecoxib has Potent Anti-Tumour Effects as a Single Agent and in Combination with BCG Immunotherapy in a model of Urothelial Cell Carcinoma. Eur Urol. 2008 Jan 15; 7;96(9):1384-93
  35. Dudderidge TJ, McCracken SR, Loddo M, Fanshawe TR, Kelly JD, Neal DE, Leung HY, Williams GH, Stoeber K. Mitogenic growth signalling, DNA replication licensing, and survival are linked in prostate cancer.Br J Cancer. May 7;96(9):1384-93. Epub 2007 Apr 3
  36. Lynch AG, Neal DE, Kelly JD, Burtt GJ, Thorne NP. Missing channels in two-colour microarray experiments: combining single-channel and two-channel data.
    BMC Bioinformatics. 2007 Jan 25;8:26.
  37. Rodgers MA, Hempel S, Aho T, Kelly JD, Kleijnen J, Westwood M. Diagnostic tests used in the investigation of adult haematuria: A systematic review.  BJU Int. 2006 Dec;98(6):1154-60.
  38. Rodgers M, Nixon J, Hempel S, Kelly JD et al. Diagnostic tests and algorithms used in the investigation of haematuria: systematic reviews and economic evaluation. Health Technol Assess 2006; 10: 1–276
  39. Wallard MJ, Pennington CJ, Veerakumarasivam A, Burtt G, Mills IG, Warren A, Leung HY, Murphy G, Edwards DR, Neal DE, Kelly JD.  Comprehensive profiling and localisation of the matrix metalloproteinases in urothelial carcinoma.  Br J Cancer. 2006 Feb 27;94(4):569-77
  40. Mills IG, Gaughan L, Robson CN, McCracken S, Kelly J, Neal DE. Huntington interacting protein 1 (HIP-1) modulates the transcriptional activity of nuclear hormone receptors.  J Cell Biol. 2005 Jul 18;170(2):191-200
  41. Kelly JD, M Westwood M, Neal DE.  Does the NMP22 bladder check test increase the accuracy of cystoscopy?  Nature Clinical Practice Urol. 2005 Jul 2;7: 2-3
  42. Dovedi SJ, Kirby JA, Atkins H, Davies BR, Kelly JD. Cyclooxygenase-2 inhibition: a potential mechanism for increasing the efficacy of bacillus Calmette-Guerin immunotherapy for bladder cancer. J Urol. 2005 Jul;174(1):332-7.
  43. Dominguez-Escrig JL,  Kelly JD, Neal DE, King SM, DaviesBR. Evaluation of the therapeutic potential of the EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor gefitinib in preclinical models of bladder cancer.  Clin Cancer Res. 2004 Jul 15;10(14):4874-84.
  44. Kelly JD, Dai J, Duggan BP, Williamson K, Bander NH, Nanus DM. Downregulation of Bcl-2 sensitises interferon-resistant renal cancer cells to Fas. Br J Cancer. 2004 Jul 5;91(1):164-70
  45. Kelly JD.  Neal DE. Ileal Conduit Revisited.Urologia Integrada y de Investigacion 2003;8(3):281-287
  46. Atkins H, Davies BR, Kirby JA, Kelly JD. Polarisation of a T-helper cell immune response by activation of dendritic cells with CpG-containing oligonucleotides: a potential therapeutic regime for bladder cancer immunotherapy. Br J Cancer. 2003 Dec 15; 89(12): 2312-9
  47. Skolarikos A. Griffiths TRL. Powell PH. Thomas DJ. Neal DE. Kelly JD. Cytological analysis of ureteric washings is informative in patients with grade 2 upper tract TCC considering endoscopic treatment.  Urology. 2003 Jun; 61(6): 1146-50.
  48. Duggan BJ. Cotter FE. Kelly JD. Hamilton PW. McCallion K. Harkin D. Gardiner T. Anderson N. Keane PF. Johnston SR. Williamson KE. Antisense Bcl-2 oligonucleotide uptake in human transitional cell carcinoma. European Urology. 40(6):685-95, 2001 Dec.
  49. Duggan BJ. Maxwell P. Kelly JD. Canning P. Anderson NH. Keane PF. Johnston SR. Williamson KE. The effect of antisense Bcl-2 oligonucleotides on Bcl-2 protein expression and apoptosis in human bladder transitional cell carcinoma. Journal of Urology. 166(3):1098-105, 2001 Sep.
  50. Steele KE, Kelly JD, McNally JA, Keane PF, Lewis SEM, McClure N.  Testicular sperm extraction by Trucut needle and milking of seminiferous tubules: a technique with high yield and patient acceptability.  Fertil Steril. 2000 Aug 1;74(2):380-383.
  51. Duggan BJ. Kelly JD. Keane PF. Johnston SR. Molecular targets for the therapeutic manipulation of apoptosis in bladder cancer. Journal of Urology. 165(3):946-54, 2001 Mar
  52. Kelly JD, Williamson KE, Irvine SA, Weir HP, Anderson, N, Hamilton PW, Keane PF, Johnston SR. Apoptosis: clinical significance for bladder cancer therapy. BJU Int. 1999;83:1-10.
  53. JD Kelly, KE Williamson, HW Weir, D McManus, P Hamilton, PF Keane, SR Johnston. Induction of apoptosis in an ex vivo model of superficial bladder cancer. BJU Int. 2000;85 (7): 911-917.
  54. Williamson KE, Kelly JD, Hamilton PW, Keane PF, Johnston SR. Bcl-2:Bax ratios in chronic lymphocytic leukaemia and their correlation with in vitro apoptosis and clinical response.  Br J Cancer. 1998; 78(4): 553-555.
  55. Kelly JD, Keane PF. Long-term results and complications of augmentation ileocystoplasty for idiopathic urge incontinence in women.  Br J Urol 1998; 82(4): 609-610.
  56. Kelly JD, Young M, Johnston SR, Keane PF. Efficacy of an oral prostaglandin in the treatment of interstitial cystitis. Eur J Urol. 1998. 33 20-24.
  57. JD Kelly, KE Williamson, BJ Duggan, HW Weir, P Hamilton, PF Keane, SR Johnston. Role of oligonucleotide therapy to enhance chemosensitivity in bladder cancer. Leeds Medical Information 1998; 26:1-4.
  58. Kelly JD, Best BGB. The condom; an effective penile dressing. Br J Urol.1998; 82(2): 292-294.
  59. Ellis PC, Kelly JD, Kernohan RM, Johnston LJC. Management of acquired renal arteriovenous fistulae with a vein-covered stent. J Int Radiology 1997; 11: 157-159.
  60. Kelly JD, Kernohan RM, Johnston SR, Keane PF. Quality Of Life Following Clam Ileocystoplasty. Eur J Urol. 1997; 32:30-33.
  61. Kelly JD, Williamson KE, Weir HP, McManus D, Hamilton PW, Keane PF, Johnston SR.  A rapid method to quantitate apoptosis in superficial bladder cancer. Br J Urol 1997; 80 (6): 927-933.
  62. Kelly JD, Keane PF. Advances In The Management Of Ureteric Calculi. Chirurgia International. 1996;3(4):12-14.
  63. Kelly JD, Kernohan RM, Johnston SR, Keane PF. Day case lasertripsy for ureteric calculi. J Ambulatory Surgery. 1996; 6 (1):18-20.
  64. Wilson BG, Deans G, Kelly JD, McCrory D. Laparoscopic Nephrectomy - Initial experience and cost implications in a non-specialised unit.  Br J Urol. 1995; 75: 276-279.
  65. Tandon SK, Kelly JD, Irwin ST. Irradiated Polyglacyin 910: A new rapidly hydrolysed suture material.  J Royal Coll Surg Ed. 1995; 40: 185-187.
  66. Kelly JD, Keane PF, Johnston SR, Kernohan RM. Lasertripsy for Ureteric Calculi: Results in 250 patients.  Ulster Medical Journal. 1995; 64: 126-130.