Interview with Professor Andrew Nunn, conducted by Professor Tilli Tansey, for the History of Modern Biomedicine Research Group, 09 August 2016, in the School of History, Queen Mary University of London. Transcribed by Mrs Debra Gee, and edited by Professor Tilli Tansey and Mrs Sarah Beanland. The project management and the technical support (filming and production) were undertaken by Mr Adam Wilkinson and Mr Alan Yabsley, respectively.
Professor Andrew Nunn (b. 1943) has been working in clinical trials and epidemiological research since 1966, when he joined the Medical Research Council (MRC) Tuberculosis & Chest Diseases Unit as a Statistician, becoming Senior Statistician in 1972. Until 1986 he was directly involved in the design, conduct and analysis of the programme of trials conducted under the leadership of Professors Wallace Fox and Denny Mitchison in East Africa, Hong Kong and Singapore, which led to the worldwide adoption of short-course chemotherapy for tuberculosis (TB). Following the closure of that Unit he joined the MRC’s Uganda AIDS Programme which researched the dynamics of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) epidemic in a rural African environment. On his return to the UK, he became Head of the Division Without Portfolio within the newly formed MRC Clinical Trials Unit with responsibility for developing trials in neglected areas. He was Senior Statistician on the recently completed REMoxTB and RIFAQUIN trials. Currently, he is an Investigator and Senior Statistician on three international phase 3 trials of TB treatment, one of which, STREAM, he is Co-Chief Investigator, the first phase 3 trial in multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB).
The History of Modern Biomedicine Research Group is funded by the Wellcome Trust, which is a registered charity (no. 210183). The current interview has been funded by the Wellcome Trust Strategic Award entitled “Makers of modern biomedicine: testimonies and legacy” (2012-2017; awarded to Professor Tilli Tansey).
The interview is part of the History of the Modern Biomedicine Interviews (Digital Collection).
Access to the transcript of this video interview and its related material:
History of Modern Biomedicine Interviews (Digital Collection), items e2017057-e2017066.
Example of how to cite: Tansey E M (intvr); Yabsley A (prod) (2017) Nunn, Andrew: 01 - Becoming a Medical Statistician (09-Aug-2016). History of Modern Biomedicine Interviews (Digital Collection), item e2017058. London: Queen Mary University of London.
Access to the transcript of a longer, audio interview:
Note: Video interviews are conducted following standard oral history methodology, and have received ethical approval (reference QMREC 0642). Video interview transcripts are edited only for clarity and factual accuracy. Related material has been deposited in the Wellcome Library.
© The Trustee of the Wellcome Trust, London, 2017
Professor Nunn also contributed to our Witness Seminar on Short-course Chemotherapy for Tuberculosis.