Professor Martin BENNETT,
MB BCh PhD
BHF Professor of Cardiovascular Sciences
University of Cambridge, Department of Medicine, Cambridge, UK
Professor Bennett trained in Cardiology in Birmingham and Cambridge. He was awarded one of the very first BHF 7-year Clinician Scientist Fellowships in 1990 and undertook research training at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund Laboratories, London, studying vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) division and cell death in atherosclerosis and arterial injury. This was followed by a post-doctoral position in Seattle, USA, and later award of a BHF Senior Fellowship in 1997. He currently holds the British Heart Foundation Chair of Cardiovascular Sciences at the University of Cambridge, with Honorary Consultant Cardiologist positions at Addenbrooke’s and Papworth Hospitals, and heads the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine in Cambridge. Professor Bennett directs the Cambridge BHF Centre for Research Excellence, the Cambridge Cardiovascular Strategic Research Initiative and the Cambridge PhD programme in Cardiovascular Research.
His major research interest is the vascular biology of atherosclerosis and artery development, and has identified the mechanisms and consequences of VSMC apoptosis and cell senescence in atherosclerosis. His clinical research programme examines the ability of invasive and non-invasive coronary artery imaging to identify vulnerable plaques, focussing particularly on VH-IVUS and CT. Professor Bennett has published widely on these subjects, and is currently on the editorial board of Circulation Research. In 2007 he was elected to the Academy of Medical Sciences and was the Chairman of the British Atherosclerosis Society until 2014.
Professor Rory COLLINS
MBBS (medical); BSc & MSc (statistics); FRS, FMedSci, FRCP
Head, Nuffield Department of Health
University of Oxford
PI/CEO, UK Biobank
Rory Collins studied Medicine at St Thomas’s Hospital Medical School, London, and Statistics at George Washington University (USA) and Oxford University.
He came to Oxford in 1981 to run the ISIS “mega-trials” which showed that emergency treatment of heart attacks with streptokinase and aspirin halves mortality. Subsequently, his focus has involved showing that lowering LDL-cholesterol safely reduces the risk of having heart attacks and strokes.
In 1985, he became co-director (with Richard Peto) of the University of Oxford’s Clinical Trial Service Unit & Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU). He was appointed BHF Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology in 1996, and Head of the Nuffield Department of Population Health in 2013.
Rory became Principal Investigator of the UK Biobank prospective study of 500,000 people in 2005. He was elected to the Fellowship of the UK Academy of Medical Science in 2004 and the Royal Society in 2015, and knighted by the Queen for services to Science in 2011.