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Who we are

The COVIDENCE UK Study is run by a group of researchers at Queen Mary University of London, King's College London, The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, The University of Edinburgh, Swansea University and Queen's University Belfast. Meet the team!

Professor Adrian Martineau: Chief Investigator

Adrian is Professor of Respiratory Infection and Immunity at Queen Mary University of London. He is a practising lung doctor who conducts clinical trials of nutritional approaches to reduce risk of respiratory infections. He will lead on the investigation of risk factors for developing coronavirus disease in the COVIDENCE UK cohort.


Professor Gerome Breen: Principal Investigator

Gerome is Professor of Psychiatric Genetics at King’s College London. His principal research interest is in the genetics of mood disorders, psychosis and eating disorders. He will lead on evaluating the impact of coronavirus disease on the mental wellbeing of COVIDENCE UK Study participants.


Hayley Holt: Principal Investigator

Hayley graduated with an MSc in Reproductive and Developmental Biology from Imperial College, London, and is currently a PhD student at the Institute of Population Health Sciences, Queen Mary University of London. Her research interests include a focus on translational medicine to promote advancements in disease prevention, diagnosis, and the development of interventions for the improvement of global health.


Professor Chris Griffiths: Co-investigator

Chris leads a programme of infectious disease research at Queen Mary University of London. His work focuses on optimising screening for HIV, TB, and hepatitis B and C in primary care and community populations. He is Director of the Institute of Population Health Sciences at Queen Mary and co-Director of the Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research.


Professor Aziz Sheikh: Co-investigator

Aziz is Director of the Usher Institute in Edinburgh. He is also Director of the Asthma UK Centre for Applied Research (AUKCAR), Director of the Scottish Allergy and Respiratory Academy (SARA), Director of the NIHR Global Respiratory Health Unit (RESPIRE) and Co-director of the NHS Digital Academy. Aziz is a primary care academic and epidemiologist with substantial research interests in asthma/allergy and in leveraging the potential of health information technology and data science to transform the delivery of care and improve population health. He will act as the COVIDENCE UK lead for Scotland.


Professor Ronan Lyons: Co-investigator

Ronan is Professor of Public Health at Swansea University and National Lead for Improving Public Health at Health Data Research UK. He has many years' experience in large-scale studies using linked data, the evaluation of natural experiments, and cluster and individual randomised trials. He will act as the COVIDENCE UK lead for Wales.


Professor Frank Kee: Co-investigator

Frank directs the UK Clinical Research Collaboration Centre of Excellence for Public Health Research (Northern Ireland) and is Deputy Director of the Centre for Public Health in Queens University, Belfast. Frank’s research interests embrace determinants of public health from molecules to populations, as well as public health interventions. He will act as the COVIDENCE UK lead for Northern Ireland.


Professor Seif Shaheen: Co-investigator

Seif is Clinical Professor of Respiratory Epidemiology at Queen Mary University of London and has considerable experience in conducting cohort studies. His research aims to increase understanding of the genetic, lifestyle and environmental causes of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and impaired lung function, with a particular focus on the developmental origins of these disorders.


Professor Gwyneth Davies: Co-investigator

Gwyneth Davies is Professor of Respiratory Medicine at Swansea University Medical School and Honorary Respiratory Consultant at Swansea Bay University Health Board, where she leads the Asthma service. She is founding Director of the Wales Asthma Observatory within the Secure Anonymised Information Linkage (SAIL) Databank. Her research focuses on the use of health information to target and evaluate interventions to improve respiratory health and reduce inequalities in care.

Professor David McCoy: Co-investigator

David is Professor of Global Public Health at Queen Mary University of London. He qualified as a medical doctor at Southampton University and has worked in various clinical and medical capacities, including as a Director of Public Health within London.


Dr Alec Miners: Co-investigator

Alec is an Associate Professor of Health Economics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He was a member of NICE's Technology Appraisals Committee between 2007 and 2015 and is a current member of its Decision Support Unit.


Dr Mohammad Talaei: Co-investigator

Mohammad is an epidemiologist with 14 years of research experience on cardiometabolic diseases, aging and respiratory diseases. He holds an MD from the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences (Iran), an MPH from the University of Birmingham (UK), and a PhD from the National University of Singapore (Singapore), and has joined Queen Mary as a postdoctoral researcher.


Dr David Jolliffe: Co-investigator

David is an early career researcher at Queen Mary University of London, where he completed his PhD on genetic risk factors for vitamin D deficiency and acute respiratory infections. He was recently awarded a Barts Charity Lectureship to optimise vitamin D supplementation for protection against rhinovirus infections.


Dr Clare Relton: Co-investigator

Clare is a Senior Lecturer in Clinical Trials in the Pragmatic Clinical Trials Unit at Queen Mary University of London. Here, she specialises in leading innovation in efficient randomised controlled trial design. She is best known for creating platforms (public and/or patient) which then facilitate the conduct of multiple trials fast, ie the ‘Trials within Cohorts’ (TwiCs) approach.


Dr Katie Young: Co-investigator

Katie is an NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre Lecturer based at the Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre at King's College London. Her research focuses on the development and treatment of anxiety and depression, and she is Principal Investigator of the RAMP (Repeated Assessment of Mental Health in Pandemics) Study.


Dr Sarah Finer: Co-investigator

Sarah is Clinical Senior Lecturer in Diabetes at Queen Mary University of London. Her research has focused on type 2 diabetes, particularly affecting people in high risk populations such as people of South Asian heritage and women with gestational diabetes. Her other research interests include population health, through a major community genomics and health research programme, East London Genes and Health.


Dr Stamatina Iliodromiti: Co-investigator

Stamatina (Matina) is a Senior Lecturer and Director of the Centre for Women’s Health at Queen Mary University of London and Consultant Obstetrician at the Royal London Hospital. She has expertise in perinatal and reproductive epidemiology.


Ms Molly Davies: Co-investigator

Molly is a Research Assistant and PhD student at King's College London, leading on the Genetic Links to Anxiety and Depression (GLAD) Study. She is interested in better understanding risk factors for depression and anxiety disorders, and how to improve prediction of outcomes and treatment.


Miss Katie Thompson: Co-investigator

Katie graduated with an MSc in Genes, Environment and Development in Psychology and Psychiatry from King's College London. She is currently a Research Assistant for the National Institute for Health Research BioResource Maudsley at the Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre. She will be starting her PhD in Psychiatric Genetics at the Centre later this year.


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