Professor Hazel Inskip MSc, PhD, FFPH
Deputy Director, MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit, Professor of Statistical Epidemiology
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Hazel Inskip is Professor of Statistical Epidemiology and Deputy Director of the MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit in Faculty of Medicine.
Getting the right start in life is vital, and that means even before conception. If we can get it right, we can reduce the burden of obesity and non-communicable diseases in the community
She graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a first class degree in Mathematics and Statistics then did an MSc and PhD at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine where she worked for six years. She subsequently worked for the International Agency for Research in Cancer (WHO) at the MRC Laboratories in The Gambia on the Gambia Hepatitis Intervention Study, a trial of Hepatitis B vaccine in 124,000 infants. She moved to Southampton in 1991 to work at the MRC Unit.
Hazel leads a programme of research within the MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit entitled: Development, Body Composition and Health. Her main focus in recent years has been running the Southampton Women’s Survey (SWS) and contributing to and coordinating some of the resulting intervention studies that are now on-going. The SWS is an internationally-renowned cohort study, which, uniquely in the western world, recruited young women who were not pregnant and characterised them in detail before following up those who subsequently became pregnant. Some 12,583 women were recruited, of whom 3,158 went on to deliver a live-born infant. The children have been followed up regularly and the 11-13 year follow-up of the children started in August 2013.
Findings from the SWS have led to intervention studies assessing measures to improve public health. Notably, (1) maternal vitamin D supplementation is being assessed for its impact on children’s bone health and body composition in the MAVIDOS trial, (2) the observation that maternal health behaviours have a profound influence on the diets and health of the children has led to developing a ‘Healthy Conversation Skills’ training for staff in Southampton SureStart Children’s Centres, and an initiative for teenagers in schools known as LifeLab, based at Southampton General Hospital. The effects of vitamin D supplementation and/or Healthy Conversation Skills are being assessed in the SPRING trial, a factorial trial in pregnant women in Southampton. A new trial NiPPeR assessing a pre-conceptional supplement to improve maternal health started in August 2015.
Hazel has contributed to many grant awarding bodies. She is currently deputy chair of the MRC’s Population and Systems Medicine Board and a member of Arthritis Research UK’s Clinical Studies Committee. She has served on both MRC’s and the NIHR’s Clinical Fellowship Panels and was a founding member of the NIHR South Central Research for Patient Benefit Committee. She also contributes to MRC by serving as a trustee of its Pension Fund and is a member of its Cross-Board Cohort Advisory Group. She chairs the International Scientific Advisory Committee for the MRC Biostatistics Unit in Cambridge, the Steering Committee for the ENABLE London Study evaluating the health legacy of the London Olympic Village, and the Scientific Advisory Board for the International COSMOS Cohort Study of Mobile Phone Use and Health. She is member of various other advisory boards and is a member of the leadership team of the CLOSER large facility for maximising the return on cohort studies in the UK.
BSc Mathematics and Statistics, University of Edinburgh (1978)
MSc Medical Statistics, University of London (1979)
PhD Epidemiology, University of London (1985)
Deputy Director MRC Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit, University of Southampton
Chair in Statistical Epidemiology, University of Southampton
1979-1986 Research Fellow (and from 1985 Lecturer) at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of London
1986-1991 Statistician/Programmer (and from 1990 Programme Leader) for the Gambia Hepatitis Intervention Study. Employed by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (WHO).