Evidence-based medicine has at its foundation high quality clinical research.
Take, for example, some of the most common diseases afflicting 21st century populations in affluent societies — hypertension, obsity and a wide range of autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Type 1 diabetes and thyroid diseases.
This last set of diseases is the particular research area of Professor Jayne Franklyn, one of the world’s authorities on thyroid disorders. All of these diseases, she says, are so-called ‘polygenic disorders‘. Investigations now enabled by number-crunching of vast datasets on many thousands of patients with these common diseases allows us to determine the relative contribution of minor variations in DNA structure. We can thereby assess the risk of people likely to suffer from them and, where we can, take preventative steps.
Jayne Franklin is Professor of Medicine and Head of School of Clinical and Experimental Medicine at the University of Birmingham. She’s also Consultant Endocrinologist, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Trust.
Her laboratory and clinical research interests focussing on the pathogenesis of thyroid cancer and autoimmune thyroid disease and the effects of subclinical thyroid dysfunction.
She’s a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, and American Thyroid Association Paul Starr Lecturer. She was awarded the Royal College of Physicians Goulstonian Lectureship in 1994, as well as Plenary Lectureships of the Society for Endocrinology, Clinical Endocrinology Trust, and the International Congress of Endocrinology.
As well as being Head of the School of Clinical and Experimental Medicine at the University of Birmingham she an active teacher and researcher, with over 200 peer reviewed papers in thyroid research.