Major programmes of research in the DPHPC encompass several themes:
(1) Cardiovascular disease: Key objectives are to identify the separate and combined effects of genetic and lifestyle factors on the risk of cardiovascular diseases and traits, and to elucidate causal pathways. Senior scientists include: John Danesh (Professor of Epidemiology and Medicine), Kay-Tee Khaw (Professor of Clinical Gerontology), Emanuele Di Angelantonio (Lecturer in Medical Screening), with close linkages with the Departments of Haematology and Cardiovascular Medicine, quantitative MRC Units (Biostatistics and Epidemiology), and the Sanger Institute.
(2) Common cancers: Key objectives are to identify genetic variants that predispose to several common cancers and to determine their relevance for population screening. Senior scientists include: Doug Easton (Professor of Genetic Epidemiology), Paul Pharoah (Reader in Cancer Epidemiology), and Antonis Antoniou (CRUK Senior Investigator), with close linkages with the Department of Oncology.
(3) Ageing and neuroepidemiology: Key objectives are to investigate normal and abnormal cognitive ageing, spanning molecular epidemiology to policy issues, as well as determinants of major neurodegenerative outcomes, including dementia. Senior scientists include: Carol Brayne (Professor of Public Health Medicine) and Kay-Tee Khaw (Professor of Clinical Gerontology), with close linkages with the Department of Psychiatry.
(4) Prevention of chronic disease and behavioural change: The Department’s General Practice and Primary Care Research Unit focuses on the prevention of chronic disease and its consequences through studies of behavioural change and randomised community-based trials. Senior scientists include: Ann-Louise Kinmonth (Foundation Professor of General Practice), Stephen Sutton (Professor of Behavioural Science), Jonathan Mant (Professor of Primary Care Research), John Benson (Senior Lecturer in General Practice), and Simon Cohn (Senior Lecturer in Social Science).
(5) Health services research: The General Practice and Primary Care Research Unit is, through collaboration with RAND Europe, establishing a new programme of health services research with a focus on quality of care (Lead; Martin Roland, Professor of Health Services Research).
(6) Health policy: The recently established Policy and Behaviour Research Unit, funded by the UK Department of Health, is focusing on individual- and population-level behavioural risk factors for chronic diseases (Head: Professor Theresa Marteau), with close linkages with several local MRC Units (ie, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Human Nutrition) and RAND Europe.
(7) Biostatistics / medical statistics: Key objectives are optimising statistical methods to investigate data from large-scale observational studies and randomised trials. Senior scientists include: Chris Palmer (Assistant Director of Research) and Angela Wood (Lecturer in Biostatistics), with close linkages with the MRC Biostatistics Unit.
The Department collaborates closely with a number of Departments at the Clinical School, in addition to those listed above, as well as with the MRC Epidemiology Unit (Director: Professor Nick Wareham), MRC Biostatistics Unit, MRC Collaborative Centre for Human Nutrition Research (Director: Professor Ann Prentice), RAND Europe (Director: Dr Jonathan Grant), PHG Foundation (Director: Dr Ron Zimmern), and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (Director: Mike Stratton), with which Manjinder Sandhu (Lecturer in Epidemiology) has a joint appointment.