Roy Taylor qualified in medicine at the University of Edinburgh and is Professor of Medicine and Metabolism at Newcastle University and Honorary Consultant at Newcastle Hospitals NHS Trust. He has been conducting research on type 2 diabetes since 1978, and sequentially studied human adipose tissue, fibroblasts, muscle and then liver and whole body. He created the Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre in 2006 and has focussed on developing techniques to elucidate how food is handled by the body in health and disease. Recently he has demonstrated the physiological mechanisms whereby type 2 diabetes can be reversed to normal, throwing light on the aetiology of a condition previously regarded as complex and heterogenous.
Professor Taylor developed the system now used throughout the United Kingdom for screening for diabetic eye disease, which has been demonstrated to decrease blindness rates in diabetes. He has produced books and other teaching aids for retinal screeners and co-founded the British Association of Retinal Screeners.
He has delivered several named lectures including the Croom Lecture of The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (1988), the Honyman Gillespie Lecture of Edinburgh Medical Faculty (1992), the RD Lawrence (2001), Arnold Bloom (2005), Banting (2012) and Harry Keen Rank Nutrition Lecture (2016) of Diabetes UK and the Samuel Gee lecture of The Royal College of Physicians of London (2017).