"New strategies for disease prevention and management, from infancy to old age" by Prof Terry Dwyer and Dr Kazem Rahimi

Past Event

13 November 2014, 4:30pm - 6:00pm

Lecture Theatre, Oxford Martin School
34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets), Oxford, OX1 3BD

Cropped Youngtooldpurple
© Shutterstock/Athanasia Nomikou

There remain many unanswered questions in medical research about both the prevention and treatment of disease, but new technologies are opening up new opportunities to provide insights. One approach, in particular, the capacity to assemble and analyse very large health datasets, is underpinning the work of both speakers addressing problems at both ends of life.

Kazem Rahimi is utilising innovative digital technologies and large healthcare datasets to find better approaches to managing established cardiovascular disease including heart failure. Terry Dwyer, on the other hand, is pooling data on one million mothers and babies to help uncover causes of childhood cancer - an area where, despite considerable effort, little progress has been made over recent decades.

Join in on twitter with #c21health

This seminar will be live webcast on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yURabFdYHJY

About the speakers

Professor Terry Dwyer is the Executive Director of the George Institute for Global Health at the Oxford Martin School and Professor of Epidemiology, University of Oxford.

Terry is a non-communicable disease epidemiologist with extensive experience in the conduct of cohort and case control studies. He was previously Director of the Menzies Research Institute, University of Tasmania, coordinating research projects including those on cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, childhood asthma, and diabetes.

His work has focussed on infant and child health. His team's research on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and sleeping position was recognised by the NHMRC, Australia, as one of the most important contributions to medical research by Australia in the 20th Century. Much of this work was conducted on the 11,000 infants enrolled in the Tasmanian Infant Health Survey (TIHS) between 1988 and 1995 and was supported by funds from both NH&MRC and NIH.

He is currently playing a leading role in two large global cohort collaborations. The first involves a collaboration of birth cohorts in more than ten countries to obtain prospective evidence on the causes of childhood cancer. Little prospective data on this association has previously been available. This consortium, the International Childhood Cancer Cohort Consortium (14C), seeks to assemble data on approximately 1 million mothers and babies who will be followed through childhood. It has been supported financially by NCI, and currently Terry is working on this from IARC.

The second study is focused on following around 40,000 subjects who were first measured at school age and are now moving into their fourth and fifth decades. The CDAH study is one of six coborts in three countries contributing data to this consortium. This study seeks to estimate the separate effect of childhood physical and lifestyle characteristics on risk of major adult diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. There have been many publications on this including one in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2011.

Dr Kazem Rahimi, Associate Professor, is the Deputy Director of the George Institute for Global Health at the Oxford Martin School; James Martin Senior Fellow in Essential Healthcare at the University of Oxford and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford.

As the Deputy Director he leads the Essential Healthcare Programme, which aims to find practical and affordable solutions for the global health priorities of the world’s largest emerging economies, as well as the priorities of vulnerable or disadvantaged populations in established economies.

He graduated in medicine from the University of Leipzig in Germany with postgraduate training in cardiology and health services research in Leipzig, London and Oxford. Prior to joining the George Institute, in 2010, he was a Research Fellow at Oxford’s Clinical Trial Service and Epidemiological Studies Unit. His research interests include service delivery innovation in chronic disease prevention and management, large-scale complex intervention studies, and data-driven electronic decision support systems.