Dr Catherine Kerr

Head of Department for Medical Science and Public Health

Faculty:Faculty of Medical Science

Department:Allied Health

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Allied & public health

Catherine joined the Faculty of Medical Sciences in August 2016 as Deputy Head of Allied and Public Health, having previously managed research and teaching in a number of universities and subject areas.

Background

Catherine has a strong research record and significant experience in developing highly collaborative projects with clinicians, external academics, health professionals and community-based partners. As well as a background in clinical exercise physiology, and physical activity and health, Catherine is a fully registered (AfN) Nutritionist (Public Health), and Counterweight Plus Practitioner.

Catherine also has an extensive record of innovative curriculum development at both BSc and MSc level within the subject areas of nutrition, sport and exercise science, physical activity/nutrition and health, and public health. She has devised many courses which embed opportunities for students to: gain professional accreditation within their subject area; enhance employability and transferable skills; and gain invaluable experience of the working and/or relevant research environments e.g. placements and making links with local communities.

Research interests

  • The role of physical activity, calorie restriction, nutritional and/or pharmacological approaches in the long-term management of metabolic disease (obesity, type 2 diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease)
  • Weight loss and maintenance: the role of tailored exercise programmes in preserving lean body mass, preventing weight regain, and enhancing metabolic benefit
  • The role of nutritional and physical activity interventions in preventing type 2 diabetes in children and adults at high risk

Catherine’s research project experience as Principal Investigator includes: clinical exercise pharmacology trials at the University of Birmingham’s Medical School; clinical exercise physiology research; nutritional intervention trials for metabolic syndrome at the Centre for Obesity Research, Luton and Dunstable Hospital; school-based physical activity, fitness and health promotion projects in Bedfordshire; weight management interventions; exercise and appetite studies; and investigating cardiovascular risk during acute exercise in the obese. She has an excellent and consistent track record of engaging with academics, clinicians, educators and health professionals to develop innovative cross-disciplinary and translational medical and health research. She has also obtained substantial external funding for such projects which have frequently integrated opportunities for post-doctoral researchers and postgraduate students.

Areas of research supervision

  • Obesity management
  • The role of physical activity, nutrition and/or pharmacological agents in the treatment of type 2 diabetes
  • Nutritional and physical activity interventions to prevent cardio-metabolic disease

Current PhD projects

  • Lecithin supplementation: effects on the lipid profile in mild hypercholesterolaemia
  • Flax seed supplementation: effects on risk factors for type 2 diabetes

Successfully completed PhD supervisions (as Director of Studies):

  • The Impact of dietary and physical activity interventions on the metabolic health of adolescents with features of the metabolic syndrome (Funded by Alexander Trust, £45,000, and the Centre for Obesity Research, Luton and Dunstable Hospital)
  • Relationships between body image, motivation and physical education experiences in 13-14 year olds (Funded by the Alexander Trust, £45,000). Second supervisor
  • The effect of aerobic, resistance and combination training on cardiac structure and function: A longitudinal study
  • Determinants, measurement and promotion of physical activity in 10-14 year-old Bedfordshire schoolchildren: a multidisciplinary approach (Funding: Bedford Charity, £84,000)
  • An investigation into cardio-metabolic risk in children and adolescents (Funded by the Bedford Charity / Centre for Obesity Research)
  • The impact of specific pedagogical strategies to increase physical activity levels during physical education lessons (Funded by the Alexander Trust, £46,700)
  • Oxidant stress and obesity (role of exercise and nutritional intervention) (Funded in part by Smiles Charity / Association for the Study of Obesity, £12,000)
  • Effects of exercise on fibrinolysis in the obese. Collaboration: Centre for Obesity Research, Luton and Dunstable Hospital (Dr Nick Finer) (Funded by RAE funds)

Teaching

Catherine’s teaching experience includes research methods, nutrition, physical activity and health, clinical exercise physiology, fitness assessment, practical assessment of metabolic health, advanced body composition assessment, motivational interviewing, management of cardiovascular disease, obesity and type 2 diabetes, and professional skills development, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

Qualifications

  • PhD (Medicine), University of Birmingham
  • MSc Nutritional Medicine, University of Surrey
  • BSc (Hons), Sport and Exercise Science, University of Birmingham
  • Registered Nutritionist (Public Health), Association for Nutrition (AfN)
  • Counterweight (Weight Management) Plus Practitioner (annual re-accreditation)
  • Register of Exercise Professionals (REPs), level 3

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • Association for Nutrition
  • Nutrition Society
  • Diabetes UK
  • UK Public Health Public Health Register (UKPHR) Board
  • Association for the Study of Obesity
  • Norfolk Obesity Forum
  • Norfolk Physical Activity Forum

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

(All as Principal Investigator unless stated)

  • £60,000 - Oxford Brookes University. Project: Weight loss maintenance strategies following clinically significant weight loss in obese pre-diabetics (September 2014-2017)
  • £20,000 - University of Bedfordshire Research Investment Programme. Co-applicant. Project: ’Effects of breaking up prolonged periods of sitting on metabolic health, appetite control, and epigenetic regulation’ (July 2013)
  • £20,000 - University of Bedfordshire Research Investment Programme. Project: ’A comparison of the effects of moderate-intensity exercise, high-intensity, and exercise under hypoxic conditions on insulin sensitivity, gut hormones, and hunger” (April 2012)
  • £7,000 - Higher Education Academy (HEA). A Mentored ‘In-house’ Physical Activity and Nutrition Patient Clinic to Promote Employability (May 2012)
  • £45,000 - Eileen Alexander Charitable Trust (March 2010-2013). Associations of dietary glycaemic index and glycaemic load with metabolic health in post-pubertal adolescents/li>
  • £14,000 - University of Bedfordshire Matched (to Bedford Charity Funding) Bursary Scheme to support PhD student (2010-2011). Project: ‘an evaluation of the psychological determinants of physical activity in 10-11 year old and 13-14 year old schoolchildren’
  • £15,448 - Centre for Obesity Research Centre, Luton and Dunstable Hospital. Research area: metabolic syndrome, physical activity and children (2009-2011)
  • £15,448 - University of Bedfordshire Matched (to Centre for Obesity Research Funding) Bursary Scheme (August 2009-August 2011). Project: metabolic syndrome, physical activity and children
  • £46,700 - Eileen Alexander Charitable Trust (2007-2010). The role of pedagogical intervention strategies in increasing physical activity levels during PE lessons
  • £84,000 - Bedford Charity (The Harpur Trust) Community Grants Programme (2008-2010). School-based intervention strategies for increasing participation in physical activity. Impact on fitness, cardiovascular health parameters and body composition
  • £1,812 - Bedford Physical Education Old Students’ Association (Educational Projects Fund) March 2008. School-based interventions to promote physical activity in schoolchildren (aged 11-12 and 13-14 years old)
  • £5750 - Faculty Research and Development Fund “Healthy Lifestyles: enhancing professional status and opportunities for related research and consultancy”. 2009
  • £4480 - Faculty Research and Development Fund “Pre-diabetes in 14-18 year olds”. 2009-2010

Selected recent publications

Kerr C, Smith L, Charman S, Harvey S, Savory L, Fairclough S, Govus A (2016). Physical education contributes to total physical activity levels and predominantly in higher intensity physical activity categories. Eur J Physical Ed Review 1-13. DOI:10.1177/1356336XI6672127.

Bailey DP, Charman SJ, Ploetz T, Savory LA, Kerr CJ (2016). Associations between prolonged sedentary time and breaks in sedentary time with cardiometabolic risk in 10-14 year-old children: the HAPPY study. J Sport Sciences. Nov 28:1-8. [Epub ahead of print].

Harvey S, Smith L, Fairclough S, Savory L, Kerr C. (2015). An investigation of pupil’s levels of MVPA and VPA during physical education units focused on direct instruction and Tactical Games Models. European Physical Education Review, Vol. 21(1) 93–113.

Harvey S, Smith LR, Fairclough SJ, Savory LA, and Kerr CJ. (2015). An investigation of pupil’s levels of MVPA and VPA during physical education units focused on direct instruction and tactical games models. The Physical Educator. Special Issue 2015 Volume 72, P 40-58.

Bailey DP, Smith LR, Chrismas BC, Taylor L, Stensel DJ, Deighton K, Douglas J, Kerr CJ. (2015). Appetite and gut hormone responses to moderate-intensity continuous exercise, high-intensity interval exercise, in normoxic and hypoxic conditions. Appetite 89: 237-245.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Kerr CJ. (2015). The Association between cardiorespiratory fitness and cardiometabolic risk in children is mediated by abdominal adiposity: The HAPPY Study. J Phys Act Health. 12(8): 1148-1152. DOI: 10.1123/jpah.2014-0311.

Bailey D, Smith L, Chrismas B, Taylor L, Stensel D, Deighton K, Douglas J, Kerr CJ (2014). Appetite and gut hormone responses to moderate-intensity continuous exercise versus high-intensity interval exercise, in normoxic and hypoxic conditions. Obesity Facts, 7 (Suppl. 1), p21.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, Kerr CJ. (2014). The triglyceride to high-density lipoprotein ratio identifies children who may be at risk of developing cardiometabolic disease. Acta Pædiatrica 103(8): e349-e353. 1-5. DOI: 10.1111/apa.12677.

Kerr CJ, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Pang D, Kozub SA, Davies B, and Bailey DP (2013). Body fat percentage, anthropometric obesity indices and cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents. Journal of Diabetes, 5 (Suppl. 1), p. 105.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, and Kerr CJ (2013). The Hypertriglyceridemic Waist, Waist-to-Height Ratio, and Cardiometabolic Risk. Journal of Diabetes, 5 (Suppl. 1), p. 97.

Kerr CJ, Denton SJ, Boddy LM, Savory LA, and Bailey DP (2013). Associations between cardiorespiratory fitness, physical activity and clustered cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents: The HAPPY study. Obesity Facts, 6 (Suppl. 1), p.38.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, and Kerr CJ (2013). The Hypertriglyceridemic Waist, Waist-to-Height Ratio, and Cardiometabolic Risk. Obesity Facts, 6 (Suppl. 1), p. 24.

Denton SJ, Trenell MI, Plötz T, Savory LA, Bailey DP, and Kerr CJ (2013). Cardiorespiratory fitness is associated with hard and light intensity physical activity but not time spent sedentary in children aged 10-14 year old schoolchildren: the HAPPY study. PLoS ONE 8(4): e61073. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0061073.

Bailey DP, Boddy LM, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Kerr CJ (2013) Choice of activity-intensity classification thresholds impacts upon accelerometer-assessed physical activity-health relationships in children. PLoS ONE 8(2): e57101. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0057101

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, Kerr CJ (2013). The hypertriglyceridemic waist, waist-to-height ratio and cardiometabolic risk. Journal of Pediatrics 2013, 162(4), 746-752.

Davies BR, Bailey DP, Kozub SA, Kerr CJ (2012). Dietary glycaemic index and glycaemic load in relation to body mass index, body composition and waist circumference in post pubertal adolescents from Bedfordshire. Proceedings of The Nutrition Society 01/2012; 71(OCE2, p E46.

Bailey DP, Fairclough SJ, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Pang D, Deane CS, and Kerr CJ (2012). Accelerometry-assessed sedentary behaviour and physical activity levels during the segmented school day in 10–14-year-old children: the HAPPY study. European Journal of Pediatrics: Volume 171, Issue 12, Page 1805-1813.

Bailey DP, Boddy LM, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Kerr CJ (2012). Associations between cardiorespiratory fitness, physical activity and clustered cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents: the HAPPY study. European Journal of Pediatrics, 171(9), 1317-23.

Savory LA, Kerr CJ, Whiting P, Finer N, McEneny J, Ashton T (2012) Selenium supplementation and exercise: effects on oxidant stress markers in overweight adults. Obesity. 20(4), 794-801.

Recent presentations and conferences

Bailey DP, Smith LR, Chrismas BC, Taylor L, Stensel DJ, Deighton K, Douglas J, Kerr CJ (2014). Appetite and gut hormone responses to moderate-intensity continuous exercise versus high-intensity interval exercise, in normoxic and hypoxic conditions. European Congress on Obesity 2014, Sofia, Bulgaria.

Kerr CJ, Denton SJ, Pang D, Kozub SA, and Bailey DP (2013). Body fat percentage, anthropometric obesity indices and cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents. 5th International Congress on Prediabetes and the Metabolic Syndrome, Austria, April 18-20, 2013.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, Kerr CJ (2013). The hypertriglyceridemic waist, waist-to-height ratio and cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents. 5th International Congress on Prediabetes and Metabolic Syndrome, Austria, April 18-20, 2013.

Kerr CJ, Boddy LM, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Bailey DP (2013). Associations between cardiorespiratory fitness, physical activity and clustered cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents: the HAPPY study. Oral presentation. 20th European Congress on Obesity. Liverpool May 12-15, 2013.

Bailey DP, Savory LA, Denton SJ, Davies BR, and Kerr CJ (2013). The Hypertriglyceridemic Waist, Waist-to-Height Ratio, and Cardiometabolic Risk in Children and Adolescents. 20th European Congress on Obesity, Liverpool, UK.