Dr Iain Styles

Dr Iain Styles

School of Computer Science
Senior Lecturer

Contact details

School of Computer Science
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Iain Styles is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Computer Science. His research interests are in the analysis of complex data from advanced imaging and analytical techniques to understand biological structures and processes, with particular interests in the analysis of single-molecule imaging experiments, automated analysis of mass spectrometry measurements, and image reconstruction methods for diffuse optical imaging. He uses a wide range of computational approaches to address these complex interdisciplinary problems, drawing on ideas from classical image processing, machine learning, computer vision, and topology.

He is the Deputy Director of COMPARE (Centre of Membrane Proteins and Receptors), Co-Director of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Physical Sciences for Health, Head of Education in the School of Computer Science, and a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute.

For more information, please see Iain's homepage.


  • PhD in Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics, University of Birmingham, 2003

  • MSci in Physics with Theoretical Physics, University of Birmingham, 1999


Following a short spell in the microelectronics industry, Iain Styles obtained an MSci with First Class Honours in Physics with Theoretical Physics from the University of Birmingham in 1999 and went on to complete a PhD in Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics in 2003. He then moved to the School of Computer Science in Birmingham for a postdoctoral position in the area of medical imaging, moving to a full academic position in 2005.


Dr Styles teaches on a number of programs in the School of Computer Science, and on the postgraduate program in Physical Sciences for Healthcare.

Postgraduate supervision

Dr Styles has supervised more than twenty PhD students to successful completion. They have gone on to a range of careers, including prestigious postdoctoral positions at UCL, EMBL, Harvard, Cambridge, NPL and others. He is interested in supervising students working on computational technques for the analysis of complex biological datasets.


Dr Styles works in close collaboration with researchers from the chemical and biological sciences to develop novel methods for extracting information from large and complex datasets. Current research projects include:

  • Quantitative analysis of single molecule localisation microscopy datasets for the study of membrane proteins and receptors.
  • Information fusion in nanoparticle-enabled multimodal imaging
  • Automated sample classification from DNA optical maps
  • Developing novel latent representations for efficient inference in mass spectrometry
  • Interpretable machine learning techniques

Other activities

  • Member, EPSRC Peer Review College (since 2018)


Recent publications


Banbury, C, Mason, R, Styles, I, Eisenstein, N, Clancy, M, Belli, A, Logan, A & Goldberg Oppenheimer, P 2019, 'Development of the Self Optimising Kohonen Index Network (SKiNET) for Raman Spectroscopy Based Detection of Anatomical Eye Tissue', Scientific Reports, vol. 9, no. 1, 10812. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-47205-5

Lu, W, Duan, J, Orive Miguel, D, Herve, L & Styles, I 2019, 'Graph- and finite element-based total variation models for the inverse problem in diffuse optical tomography', Biomedical Optics Express, vol. 10, no. 6, pp. 2684-2707. https://doi.org/10.1364/BOE.10.002684

Wand, N, Smith, DA, Wilkinson, A, Rushton, A, Busby, SJW, Styles, I & Neely, RK 2019, 'DNA barcodes for rapid, whole genome, single-molecule analyses', Nucleic Acids Research. https://doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkz212

Griffiths, R, Sisley, E, Lopez Clavijo, A, Simmonds, A, Styles, I & Cooper, H 2019, 'Native mass spectrometry imaging of intact proteins and protein complexes in thin tissue sections', International Journal of Mass Spectrometry, vol. 437, pp. 23-29. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijms.2017.10.009

Flight, R, Landini, G, Styles, I, Shelton, R, Milward, M & Cooper, P 2018, 'Automated non-invasive cell counting in phase contrast microscopy with automated image analysis parameter selection', Journal of Microscopy. https://doi.org/10.1111/jmi.12726

Lighter, D, Hughes, J, Styles, I, Filer, A & Dehghani, H 2018, 'Multispectral, non-contact diffuse optical tomography of healthy human finger joints', Biomedical Optics Express, vol. 9, no. 4, pp. 1445-1460. https://doi.org/10.1364/BOE.9.001445

Lu, W, Lighter, D & Styles, IB 2018, 'L1-norm Based Nonlinear Reconstruction Improves Quantitative Accuracy of Spectral Diffuse Optical Tomography', Biomedical Optics Express, vol. 9, no. 4, pp. 1423-1444. https://doi.org/10.1364/BOE.9.001423

Dexter, A, Race, AM, Steven, RT, Barnes, JR, Hulme, H, Goodwin, RJA, Styles, IB & Bunch, J 2017, 'Two-Phase and Graph-Based Clustering Methods for Accurate and Efficient Segmentation of Large Mass Spectrometry Images', Analytical Chemistry, vol. 89, no. 21, pp. 11293-11300. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.7b01758

Pike, JA, Styles, IB, Rappoport, JZ & Heath, JK 2017, 'Quantifying receptor trafficking and colocalization with confocal microscopy', Methods, vol. 115, pp. 42–54. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ymeth.2017.01.005

Dexter, AJ, Race, AM, Styles, IB & Bunch, J 2016, 'Testing for multivariate normality in mass spectrometry imaging data: A robust statistical approach for clustering evaluation and the generation of synthetic mass spectrometry imaging datasets', Analytical Chemistry, vol. 88, no. 22, pp. 10893-10899. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.6b02139

Wu, HY, Filer, A, Styles, I & Dehghani, H 2016, 'Development of a multi-wavelength diffuse optical tomography system for early diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis: simulation, phantoms and healthy human studies', Biomedical Optics Express, vol. 7, no. 11, pp. 4769-4786. https://doi.org/10.1364/BOE.7.004769

Race, AM, Palmer, A, Dexter, A, Steven, RT, Styles, IB & Bunch, J 2016, 'SpectralAnalysis: software for the masses', Analytical Chemistry, vol. 88, no. 19, pp. 9451–9458. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.6b01643

Conference contribution

Styles, I 2017, Spectrally Constrained L1-Norm Improves Quantitative Accuracy of Diffuse Optical Tomography. in Proceedings of the 2017 European Conference on Biomedical Optics (ECBO). OSA Publishing, 2017 European Conferences on Biomedical Optics (ECBO), Munich, Germany, 25/06/17.

Cutter, JR, Styles, I, Leonardis, A & Dehghani, H 2016, Image-based registration for a neurosurgical robot: comparison using iterative closest point and coherent point drift algorithms. in International Conference On Medical Imaging Understanding and Analysis 2016, MIUA 2016. Procedia Computer Science, vol. 90, Elsevier, pp. 28-34, Medical Image Understanding and Analysis Conference (MIUA 2016), Loughborough, United Kingdom, 6/07/16. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.procs.2016.07.006

Taylor, S, Perry, T, Styles, I, Cobbold, M & Dehghani, H 2015, Accounting for systematic errors in bioluminescence imaging to improve quantitative accuracy. in SPIE Proceedings: Clinical and Preclinical Applications of Diffuse Optics I . vol. 9538, SPIE Proceedings, vol. 9538, Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers, Diffuse Optical Imaging V, Munich, Germany, 23/06/15. https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2183756

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