EarlyBird Diabetes Trust

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Study DirectorProfessor Terry Wilkin MD, FRCP

Terry graduated from St Andrew’s Medical School and received his research training at the University of Montpellier and subsequently funded by the Wellcome Trust at the University of Southampton. He was appointed to the Foundation Chair of Medicine at Plymouth Postgraduate Medical School in 1993 and is currently Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism at the new Peninsula Medical School.

In addition to a large number of publications in the medical literature and invited lectures worldwide, recent media appearances include Radio 4’s “Am I Normal” on obesity, “Case Notes” on both diabetes and obesity, Radio 4’s Today programme on EarlyBird findings and a critique of the latest Government statement on physical inactivity on BBC News 24.

Study Co-ordinatorDr. Linda Voss PhD

Linda is an arts graduate of St Andrew’s University and went on to gain a Masters in Educational Psychology. She co-ordinated the Wessex Growth Study for 13 years and has contributed widely to the literature both on childhood growth and psychosocial aspects of short stature. She is currently Senior Research Fellow at the Peninsula Medical School.

She has been invited to address the Royal Society of Medicine, and the 1st National Conference on Obesity and Health. She has been a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and the Child Growth Foundation workshops on Obesity, the Irish Growth Monitoring workshop and the Government Office of Science & Technology Foresight Obesity Project workshop. She contributed recently to Radio 4’s “Am I Normal” programme on short stature.

Senior Statistician/Data ManagerBrad Metcalf MSc

Brad is a graduate in applied statistics from the University of Plymouth. He worked as a statistician for the Consumers’ Association magazine Which? before joining EarlyBird as Statistician/Data Manager. Brad has been part of EarlyBird team since its inception in 1999, and has a special interest in the measurement of physical activity and its impact on metabolic health.

He was invited to speak on EarlyBird data to the 2006 world conference on Obesity in Sydney. He recently completed, with distinction, an MSc in Physical Activity and Nutrition Science at the University of Bristol and was awarded best dissertation prize and is now working towards his PhD. Brad is author of several key papers on physical activity.

Senior Research NurseAlison Jeffery PhD

Alison, a former midwife, is one of the longest serving members of the team. She has, among her many other roles, day-to-day clinical contact with the families. With an MSc already under her belt, Alison has now been awarded her PhD for an excellent thesis on the impact of puberty on insulin resistance and metabolic health.

In 2006 she was awarded the 1st Novo Nordisk UK Nurses Research Fellowship, and has an impressive number of publications under her belt.

Statistician/Data ManagerDr. Jo Hosking PhD, nee Kirby

Jo holds a 1st class BSc and PhD in biological sciences. She has been with EarlyBird eight years and has acquired considerable expertise in longitudinal analysis (multi-level modelling etc). Jo won 1st prize in the Rank Prize Funds symposium for junior researchers in 2005, and addressed the 2006 Sydney meeting of the International Congress on Obesity. She has published on resting energy expenditure and body composition and is now working on markers of pre-diabetes.

Statistician Adam Streeter MSc

Adam has recently joined the team as a Statistician and comes with statistical experience working for an international medical-devices company. He has worked on developing macros for growth charts and is analysing bone data, for which he presented a poster at the 2011 EASD conference. Adam has demonstrated a skill for analysing longitudinal data in his MSc in Applied Statistic, for which he gained a distinction.

Statistician Mohammod Mostazir MSc

Mos, the newest member of EarlyBird team, graduated with an MSc in Social Research Methods and Statistics from City University, London.

Mos has previously worked as a statistician on an MRC funded project on HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa, and a WHO and USAID funded project on maternal and child health development in Bangladesh.

Consultant Clinical BiochemistDr. Michael Murphy MB ChB

Michael read both medicine and biochemistry at Trinity College, Dublin, and completed his higher specialist training in clinical biochemistry in Glasgow. He was appointed consultant chemical pathologist to Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, where he joined the EarlyBird Study as advisor in biochemistry. His primary research interest lies in the origins of insulin resistance and gender differences in its behaviour.

In 2002, he was appointed Senior Lecturer to the Department of Molecular & Cellular Pathology at the University of Dundee, but retains an active involvement in EarlyBird and has embarked on MD studies using the EarlyBird data set.

Consultant EndocrinologistDr Daniel Flanagan MD

Daniel is a consultant endocrinologist with a research interest in the impact of metabolic disturbance on autonomic function.

He is currently working on the influence of insulin resistance on heart rate variability in the EarlyBird children.

Academic Clinical FellowDr Buki Ajala

Academic clinical fellow in diabetes and endocrinology. Buki received undergraduate and basic medical training in Ibadan and Liverpool, receiving prizes, awards and scholarships along the way.

Clinical Support WorkerKaren Brookes

Karen assures smooth day-to-day running of the EarlyBird study. She sets up the “clinic” and recording equipment each day and assists the senior nurse with the many tests and measurements, including metabolic rate, ECG recordings and pulse wave velocity. She also sets, collects and downloads activity monitors from the youngsters’ schools, which are spread all over the city.

Karen maintains very close contact with all the families as well as the schools and has a key role in minimising sample attrition. Her past experience with teenagers is already proving a huge asset!

Clinical Support WorkerVal Morgan

Val is a former school nurse and health visitor assistant and has unfailingly stepped in to help whenever we have been short staffed, for which we are hugely grateful. She regularly helps with “long visits” at the hospital as well as all the “short visits” in schools, and is indispensable for data entry.

PA to Prof WilkinKerry Godley-McAvoy

Kerry is Hon Secretary of the EarlyBird Diabetes Trust. Kerry is always happy to provide enquirers with more information about the work of EarlyBird Diabetes Trust, or put you in contact with Prof Wilkin (tel 01752 763498).

Volunteers

Last, but not least, we acknowledge our two very willing volunteers, Jenny Shobrook who regularly gives up a morning a week to lend a hand in the “clinic”, making cups of tea for the EarlyBird parents, preparing breakfast for the hungry youngsters, filing forms, writing birthday cards, acting as escort and a thousand other little jobs. Jean’s contribution to data entry is greatly appreciated by the stats team.