Leeds In Vitro Diagnostics Co-operative

In Memoriam: Professor Doug Altman

26 June 2018

We were deeply saddened to hear of the death of Professor Doug Altman, whose influential work in the field of medical statistics provided the foundation for organisations like NIHR Leeds MIC.

Professor Altman collaborated closely on the NIHR programme grant that informed the framework for the Diagnostic Evidence Co-operatives – forerunners of the Leeds In Vitro Diagnostics Co-operative. In particular, he worked closely with colleagues in Leeds to develop programmes of research into new diagnostic methods that incorporated rigorous statistical evaluation. These programmes included work on urological cancers and liver disease that resulted in influential publications.

He was an influential biomedical statistician in the fields of clinical trials and clinical cancer research, too, devising new statistical methodologies that have shaped the way cancer research is conducted. As head of the Imperial Cancer Research Fund, now Cancer Research UK, he worked closely with colleagues in Leeds, sharing work on clinical trials and statistical methodology.

Professor Peter Selby, Chair of the NIHR Leeds MIC Clinical and Scientific Advisory Board and former Clinical Director of NIHR DEC Leeds, said: “Doug was very highly regarded not only because of the high quality of his science, but also because of the generous and thoughtful way in which he shared his expertise and time with many colleagues, in the interests of cancer patients.”