After obtaining a joint-honours BSc in Biology and Mathematics at the University of Bristol, Kaitlin was able to combine and apply these two fields to epidemiological study designs within the Wellcome Trust Genetic, Molecular and Lifecourse Epidemiology 4-year PhD. Specifically, the topic of her PhD was aimed at assessing various causes and consequences of cardiovascular health variation across the lifecourse, with focus on risk factors including early life factors, aspects of diet and eating behaviour and adiposity. Throughout her PhD, Kaitlin was particularly interested in using methods to improve causal inference within observational epidemiological context, including the use of comprehensive longitudinal cohorts, randomized controlled trials and Mendelian randomization.
After completing her PhD, Kaitlin helped develop MR-Base, a continuously updated online platform that collates and harmonises summary-level data from large-scale genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and automates two-sample Mendelian randomization analyses, including a range of new sensitivity analyses.
Kaitlin is now a post-doctoral Research Associate within the MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit, based in the School of Social and Community Medicine. Working under the supervision of Dr Nicholas Timpson and Prof. David Evans, she is applying several causal inference methods (mainly Mendelian randomization and Recall-by-Genotype analyses) within large population-based cohorts to understand adiposity and dietary intake/eating behaviour as causal risk factors for disease and mortality.