Our team

Our Team

Dr Amanda Cross

Dr Cross is a Reader in Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention at the St Mary’s Hospital Campus of the Faculty of Medicine within Imperial College London. In 2015, she became the Assistant Head of the Cancer Screening and Prevention Research Group (CSPRG) and recently became the Head of the CSPRG following Wendy’s retirement. She is also the Information Governance Lead for the CSPRG, and so has responsibilities for ensuring that information held by the CSPRG for the purposes of its research is used appropriately and that the necessary safeguards are in place. Dr Cross completed her PhD at Cambridge University and then spent 11 years within the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States. During her time as an investigator at NCI, she was also a mentor for the Yale University– NCI Partnership Training Program and held the position of Assistant Professor Adjunct within the Division of Chronic Disease Epidemiology at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. In the United States, Dr Cross was one of the Principal Investigators of the Polyp Prevention Trial and the CONCeRN study, both colonoscopy screening studies, and she was also one of the Principal Investigators of the U.S. Polyp Pooling Project.

Awards:
  • NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence;
  • DCEG Fellowship Achievement Award for Outstanding Accomplishments;
  • DCEG Award for Outstanding Research Paper;
  • NCI Mentor of Merit Award;
  • NIH Merit Award for Leadership of an Innovative Multidisciplinary Research Program.

Website: http://www.imperial.ac.uk/people/amanda.cross

Professor Wendy Atkin

Professor Wendy Atkin moved to the St Mary’s Hospital Campus at Imperial College in 2008 to establish the Cancer Screening and Prevention Research Group (CSPRG). She headed the CSPRG until mid-2018. The CSPRG is an internationally-renowned, multidisciplinary group undertaking research focusing primarily on bowel cancer, which includes looking at the patterns of bowel cancer in the general population, screening, early diagnosis, how bowel cancer develops and how to monitor people who are at higher risk. The ultimate aim of this research is to reduce the numbers of people diagnosed with, and dying from bowel cancer.

Awards:
  • Fellowship of The Academy of Medical Sciences, The Academy of Medical Sciences, 2015;
  • Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) – awarded for services to Bowel Cancer Prevention, 2013;
  • Bengt Ihre Medal, The Swedish Society of Medicine, 2012;
  • BSG President’s Medal (2011), British Society of Gastroenterologists, 2011;

Elizabeth Coles

Elizabeth (Liz) is an experienced research support officer with a nursing and clinical trials background.

She provides support to both Professor Atkin and the whole team to ensure that all research projects run smoothly and professionally.

Katherine Wooldrage

Kate is an experienced medical statistician who has worked with the CSPRG for more than eight years, in particular on the UKFSST, SIGGAR and IA studies. As our senior statistician, Kate leads on the statistical analysis on many of our trials, and provides significant input to the design of future studies. Her role also involves preparing data for analysis, performing statistical analyses and preparing the results for publication, as well as contributing to the writing up of manuscripts and the management of the group’s studies and trials.

Dr Paula Kirby

Paula joined CSPRG in 2015 and is responsible for the operational and financial management of all projects. Paula has several years of clinical trial management experience (academic and pharmaceutical industry), and is an experienced Project Manager (PMP qualified). Additional responsibilities include drafting grant applications; administering new and existing grants; dealing with ethics, R&D, clinical governance and quality assurance regulations; liaising with legal teams to arrange sponsorship and establish contracts; convening and co-ordinating monitoring committees, and recruiting trial staff as required.

Emma Robbins

Emma is a Junior Epidemiologist and is involved in interpreting data, preparing manuscripts for publication, and undertaking literature reviews. Prior to joining the CSPRG, Emma studied Biological Natural Sciences at Cambridge University before completing a MSc in Public Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), focusing on health economics. Emma is particularly interested in understanding how the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) performs in screening, surveillance, and diagnostic settings.

Kevin Pack

After 15 years working in laboratories on the molecular genetics of bowel cancer including occasional scientific projects for Professor Wendy Atkin, Kevin took on his current role within CSPRG. He has been involved in administration, data collection, coding and data cleaning for several studies, liaising with individuals from various disciplines in dozens of hospitals. Projects have included UKFSST, SIGGAR, the Intermediate Adenoma study, SOCCER and currently the FIT for Follow-Up study.

Bhavita Patel

Bhavita initially joined the CSPRG in 2014 as a data clerk having had previous experience in Biomedical Science and working within private and NHS pathology laboratories. Bhavita’s current role at the CSPRG is as a Clinical Trials Assistant and works on a variety of clinical research projects. Her main responsibilities include, assisting with the collection, entry, coding and cleaning of clinical trial data as well as the development and management of study documentation.

More recently, Bhavita has taken the lead for managing and facilitating the group’s Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPI/E) activities. Bhavita is passionate about increasing public knowledge and awareness of the CSPRG and helps to promote the group’s research on the CSPRG Twitter account.

Iain Stenson

Before joining the CSPRG in 2014, Iain worked as a data analyst in telecommunications and as a C++ developer for scientific applications. He now manages the study databases, collects clinical data, drafts IG policy and provides day-to-day technical support for the group. This work includes systems administration and security; liaising with NHS hospitals and other providers to gather clinical data; designing patient management systems and other data-processing applications; and maintaining compliance with CSPRG Information Governance policies. It is also Iain’s role to understand the requirements of the CSPRG statisticians and provide them with the data they need. He is generally interested in anything that can improve methods of extracting or normalising clinical data and in the legal and ethical aspects of clinical data collection.

Rhea Harewood

Rhea is a PhD student in Cancer Epidemiology within the Faculty of Medicine of Imperial College London. Working within the CSPRG her research will focus on colorectal cancer screening and prevention by the identification of risk factors for proximal colon cancer and the optimisation of screening of high-risk groups. Prior to starting a PhD, Rhea worked as a Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) in the Cancer Survival Group. Her research involved investigating international differences and time trends in cancer survival as a well as ethnic and socio-economic inequalities in cancer survival in North America. Rhea holds an MSc in Public Health from LSHTM and an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from the University of the West Indies.

Lucy Dowden

Lucy is a Clinical Trials Manager and is involved in setting up new studies and providing overall trial management to ongoing projects. Prior to joining the CSPRG, Lucy was a clinical trial coordinator within the NHS and worked on a variety of academic and commercial studies within oncology. Lucy holds an undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Exeter and is currently completing an MSc in Genomic Medicine at Imperial College.

Sam Ellis

Sam is a Junior Data Analyst and Developer, and supports data collection, data storage and data processing within the CSPRG. Before joining the CSPRG this year Sam worked using large and complex datasets to study animal behaviour. Sam’s role in the CSPRG is to assist in managing the databases, collecting clinical data, drafting information governance and generally processing data ready to be analysed by other members of the team. Sam holds an undergraduate degree in Zoology from Bristol University and a PhD in Biology from the University of York.

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