Dr Ruth Backman BSc (Hons) MRes PhD

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics

Contact details

Public Health, Epidemiology & Biostatistics
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


Ruth is a Research Fellow who is currently working on the BLISS Programme (Birmingham Lung Improvement Studies) and is responsible for the TargetCOPD study that is being run as part of the programme


  • PhD Medical Microbiology 2010
  • MRes Biomedical Sciences 2005
  • BSc (Hons) Pharmacology 2004


Ruth completed her BSc (Hons) in Pharmacology in 2004 after which she went on to gain her MRes where she researched the chemoprotective effects of vegetable extracts.

Ruth then undertook her BBSRC-CASE funded PhD studentship at The Rowett Institute of Health and Nutrition in Aberdeen. The project examined the effects of novel prebiotics on gut bacteria. One prebiotic was found to have favourable properties, so a study was run with healthy volunteers to look at the effects in vivo. As a result of this study the commercial partners, Provexis plc, are now trialling the substance in patients suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases where it is thought that symptoms of this debilitating disease can be improved by taking this supplement.

In 2010 Ruth joined the PC-CRTU where she gained valuable knowledge about the clinical trials process whilst setting up a study involving 120 GP practices across the UK.

Ruth now works on the BLISS programme and is the trial coordinator for the TargetCOPD study which is funded by the NIHR to find early cases of COPD.


  • Epidemiological Methods


Research themes:
COPD screening & epidemiology; Clinical Trials; Atrial Fibrillation; Gut Bacteria; Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

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