CKB Steering Committee

Professor Zhengming Chen qualified in medicine at Shanghai Medical University in 1983 (now Fudan University), and gained his DPhil in Epidemiology at the University of Oxford in 1993. He was appointed as Professor of Epidemiology by the University of Oxford in 2006. He is now the Director of the China Programs at the Oxford University’s Clinical Trial Service Unit and Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU) and co-executive director of the China Oxford Centre for International Health Research. His main researches focus on the environmental and genetic causes of chronic disease, evidence-based medicine and evaluation of widely practicable treatments for chronic diseases (such as IHD, stroke and cancer) as well as efficient strategies for chronic disease control in developing countries. Over the past 20 years, he has led several large randomised trials in heart disease (eg, COMMIT/CCS-2), stroke (eg, CAST) and cancer and 3 cohort studies involving >750,000 individuals. Since 2003 he has been the lead principal investigator in the UK for the China Kadoorie Biobank (CKB) prospective study of 0.5 million adults. He leads a research team in Oxford which is responsible for study design and development of procedures and IT systems for the CKB, and for central data management, curation and detailed analyses. He is an honorary professor of Peking Union Medical College and Fudan University in China.


picture of Liming Li

Professor Liming Li completed his medical training M.D and M.P.H. at Beijing Medical University, where he later went on to become Dean and Professor. He is currently chair of board & Executive Vice-President of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (CAMS) & the Peking Union Medical College (PUMC) and a Professor of Epidemiology at the School of Public Health, Peking University. He was the founding director of the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC). He is also President of Chinese Epidemiology Association, President of the National Chronic Disease Committee of the Ministry of Health of China, and member of expert committee for the WHO West Pacific Region. His academic research has focussed on the treatment and prevention of hypertension, genetic epidemiological studies of cardiovascular disease, environmental epidemiology and twin studies of non-communicable diseases, as well as quality of life among the elderly in China, the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases, and public health policy and evidence-based decision making. He has been instrumental in establishing and directing a number of large research projects. He is the principal investigator in China for the China Kadoorie Biobank prospective study. At CAMS, he has led the China-Oxford Centre for International Health Research based at the Fuwai Hospital, which facilitates the large collaborative research projects between Oxford and CAMS.


Chen Junshi

Professor Junshi Chen completed his medical training and Diploma in Public Health at Beijing Medical College, followed by post-graduate training in pharmacology at the Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. He is currently Research Professor at the China National Centre for Food Safety Risk Assessment.  In 2006, he was elected as a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering. For over 40 years Professor Chen has been involved in research in nutrition and food safety, including the role of iron fortification of soy sauce in controlling iron deficiency in anaemia (IDA) that has led to widespread use of iron fortified soy sauce in China. Since the 1980’s, he has conducted a series of large epidemiological studies on diet, nutrition and chronic diseases involving 65 rural counties across China, in collaboration with Cornell University and University of Oxford. This research led to the publication of two bilingual monographs “Diet, lifestyle and mortality: Characteristics of 65 rural counties in China (1990)” and “Mortality, biochemistry, diet and lifestyle in rural China: Geographic study of the characteristics of 69 counties in mainland China and 16 areas in Taiwan (2006)”. These studies not only helped strengthen the local research capacity and infrastructure, but also helped to establish long-term strategic research partnerships, particularly with CTSU, University of Oxford. These early collaborations were key in the development of the China Kadoorie Biobank, which Professor Chen has been actively involved in from the start as senior member of the steering committee.


RCollins (2)Professor Sir Rory Collins, FRS studied Medicine at St Thomas’s Hospital Medical School, London University, from 1974-1980, and Statistics at George Washington University (1976-7) and Oxford University (1982-3). In 1985 he became co-director, with Professor Sir Richard Peto, of the University of Oxford's Clinical Trial Service Unit & Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU). In 1996, he was appointed Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology at Oxford, supported by the British Heart Foundation. He became Principal Investigator and Chief Executive of the UK Biobank prospective study of 500,000 people in September 2005. From July 2013, he has become Head of the Nuffield Department of Population Health at Oxford University. His work has been in the establishment of large-scale epidemiological studies of the causes, prevention and treatment of heart attacks, other vascular disease, and cancer. He was knighted in 2011 for his services to science.


Professor Sir Richard Peto, FRS is currently Professor of Medical Statistics and Epidemiology at the University of Oxford, and co-director (with Professor Sir Rory Collins) of the Clinical Trial Service Unit and Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU). He was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1989 for introducing meta-analyses of randomised trials, was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1999 for services to epidemiology, and received in 2010 and 2011 the Cancer Research UK and the BMJ Lifetime Achievement Award. Richard Peto, Rory Collins and others in the Oxford CTSU have, by their large randomised trials, large prospective studies and worldwide meta-analyses, increased substantially the estimated importance of blood lipids, blood pressure and smoking as causes of premature death. Peto has recently collaborated in major studies of alcohol in Russia and of malaria in Africa and India. His investigations into the worldwide health effects of smoking and benefits of stopping at particular ages have helped to communicate effectively the vast and growing burden of disease from tobacco use, have helped change national and international attitudes about smoking and public health, and have helped many smokers to stop. He was the first to describe clearly the future worldwide health effects of current smoking patterns, predicting one billion deaths from tobacco in the present century if current smoking patterns persist, as against “only” 100 million in the 20th century.


Robert Clarke .pngDr Robert Clarke is Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health Medicine at CTSU, University of Oxford, and Honorary Consultant in Public Health Medicine at Oxford University Hospitals Trust. He is Scientific Director of the MSc course in Global Health Science. He is an External Examiner in Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of Cambridge and University College Dublin and Royal College of Physicians in Ireland.  He qualified in clinical medicine at the National University of Ireland in 1979 and then worked for 5 years in internal medicine and 5 years in Cardiology. He was a Research Fellow in Clinical Pharmacology at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA, for 2 years, working on the pharmacology of aspirin and direct thrombin inhibitors. He joined CTSU in 1991 and coordinated several large observational studies and meta-analyses of observational studies and randomized trials. Some of the projects that he coordinated included the Whitehall study, Prospective Studies Collaboration, PROCARDIS, Homocysteine Studies Collaboration, B-Vitamin Treatment Trialists’ Collaboration and BEST-D trial. His work has focussed on the generation of reliable evidence for avoidance of death and disability from cardiovascular diseases using large-scale observational studies and randomised trials. His specific research interests include assessment of the importance of genetic variants and plasma biomarkers for coronary heart disease, stroke and aortic stenosis. His expertise includes use of genetic epidemiology of cardiovascular disease to understand disease mechanisms and define therapeutic targets. He joined the CKB study team to focus on study of the genetic and other blood-based risk factors for stroke, coronary heart disease and other major causes of premature death.  In addition, his work on clinical trials of vitamins and fatty acids has helped to define public health policy on nutrition for disease prevention.


Dr Yu Guo gained her BSc degree at Harbin Medical University, China in 1985, and an MSc degree in Public Health School in Beijing Medical University in 1998. She worked on disease control and management in Dalian City CDC for 12 years and for the Non-Communicable Disease Department of the Ministry of Health in China from 1997-1998. Since March 2003, she has been working as the Chief of the National Coordinating Centre (NCC) for the China Kadoorie Biobank. This started with establishing NCC, selecting the 10 study sites, helping Regional Centres setting up in each site, and taking charge of all field work. The field work included organizing, coordinating and monitoring the baseline survey of 0.5 million participants between 2004-2008; the first resurvey of ~20,000 participants in 2008; and the second resurvey of ~25,000 participants from 2013-1014. She has a lead role coordinating the long-term follow-up of the cohort including the data linkage with the national health insurance system making it possible to collect data on hospitalization events for 97% of participants. Her main research focuses on public health management and evidence-based medicine, based on big cohort studies, in order to provide strategies for chronic disease prevention and control in developing countries.


Professor Jun Lv is a Professor of Epidemiology, associate director of Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics at School of Public Health, Peking University, and associate director of Peking University Institute of Environmental Medicine. She graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine degree from Beijing Medical University in 1998 and received her Ph.D. degree in Epidemiology from Peking University in 2003. She was a visiting scholar at the School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles from 2005 to 2006, and at the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Tulane University in 2016. Her main research focuses on risk factors of major chronic disease, lifestyle behaviour and the built environment, and strategies for chronic disease prevention.


Dr Robin Walters completed degrees in Natural Sciences (Cambridge) and in Genetics (Liverpool) before working for 17 years on the biophysics, biochemistry and genetics of plant photosynthesis, first in Sheffield and then in Oxford. He then held a post as a Research Fellow at Imperial College London, before moving to CTSU in June 2012. Dr Walters’s recent research has focussed on investigating the contribution of structural variation in the human genome to disease risk and phenotypic variation, with a particular focus on diabetes and obesity. He played a leading role in work identifying the highly penetrant obesity phenotype associated with a deletion on chromsome 16p, and the reciprocal effects of a duplication at the same locus. He continues to have an interest in the development of novel methodologies for the identification and analysis of genomic structural variants. His current role as Senior Scientist, Genetic Epidemiology and Statistical Genetics, is to plan and lead the genetic analysis of multipe risks in the China Kadoorie Biobank.