Professor Steffen Petersen appointed as BHF Data Science Centre Deputy Director

06 Jul 2023

Leading cardiologist Steffen Petersen has been named inaugural Deputy Director of the British Heart Foundation Data Science Centre, where he will support Cathie Sudlow in spearheading data-led science to improve heart health.

Steffen is a prominent figure in cardiovascular medicine and has been appointed to the Deputy Director role after a competitive open process. He is a Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at Queen Mary University of London, Consultant Cardiologist at Barts Health NHS Trust, UK Biobank cardiac imaging lead and an expert in cardiac imaging data science.

Steffen – who trained as a medical doctor and also has a PhD – is also the Cardiovascular Programme Director of UCL Partners Academic Medical Centre and President of the European Society of Cardiology’s European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging.

His research interests include clinical trials using cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging, cardiac imaging and primary prevention, and population-based​ studies using imaging, including AI approaches, which align with the aims and focus of the BHF Data Science Centre.

As a clinician, Steffen’s research is always squarely focused on patient needs, and he is a strong believer in the involvement of patients and the public in research. He says:

“Data science is changing how we approach medicine, and its potential to better cardiovascular public health is profound. I have admired the achievements of the BHF Data Science Centre and have been impressed by the tangible improvements to UK data science that the Centre has enabled. I can’t wait to get started in this new role.”

Steffen Peterson
Deputy Director, BHF Data Science Centre

Professor Cathie Sudlow, Director of the BHF Data Science Centre and Chief Scientist of Health Data Research UK, said:

“Steffen is a perfect fit for this leadership role, aligning especially well with our imaging and clinical trials themes. We are making great strides in improving UK data science infrastructure and shining a light on important public health issues, including the effects of the pandemic on cardiovascular health. Steffen’s appointment ensures that we will continue to support important research that can improve lives.”

Cathie Sudlow
Director, BHF Data Science Centre

The BHF Data Science Centre is a multi-million-pound partnership between the BHF and HDR UK, and is the BHF’s flagship investment in data science, enabling data-led research to improve heart and circulatory health.

Since its inception in 2020, the BHF Data Science Centre’s efforts have resulted in a number of high-profile publications and the set-up of NHS England’s Trusted Research Environment, which securely houses de-identified health records for 96% of the English population.

The Centre’s areas of work include medical imaging, led by Dr Michelle Williams, wearables, led by Professor Tim Chico, and data-enabled clinical trials, headed up by Professor Matt Sydes.

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