Dr George Savva


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Core Science Resources - methods development and innovation


My role at the Quadram Institute is to support our scientists and the institute in all statistical aspects of research, quality assurance and governance.

I have worked as a statistician in health and medical sciences since 2004.  Between 2004 and 2013 I supported large national epidemiologic studies; the National Down Syndrome Cytogenetic Register, the Medical Research Council Cognitive Function and Ageing Study, and The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing.

I graduated with a degree in mathematics from the University of Cambridge in 2000, then a MSc in Applied Statistics from UCL in 2001.  My PhD was supervised by Jo Dicks at the John Innes Centre on the topic of statistical inference for whole genome phylogenetic analysis.

As Senior Lecturer at UEA between 2013 and 2017 I led a research programme in the epidemiology of ageing and dementia, and retain an interest in the conceptualization of the frailty and in the effects of potentially inappropriate medication use in older age.  I developed and led the training in statistics for doctoral students in the faculty of medicine and health during this time.

Key Publications

Savva GM, Wharton SB, Ince PG, Forster G, Matthews FE, Brayne C; Medical Research Council Cognitive Function and Ageing Study. Age, neuropathology, and dementia. N Engl J Med. 2009 May 28;360(22):2302-9. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa0806142.

Savva GM, Arthur A. Who has undiagnosed dementia? A cross-sectional analysis of participants of the Aging, Demographics and Memory Study. Age Ageing. 2015 Jul;44(4):642-7. doi: 10.1093/ageing/afv020.

Feeney J, Savva GM, O’Regan C, King-Kallimanis B, Cronin H, Kenny RA. Measurement Error, Reliability, and Minimum Detectable Change in the Mini-Mental State Examination, Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and Color Trails Test among Community Living Middle-Aged and Older Adults. J Alzheimers Dis. 2016 May 31;53(3):1107-14. doi: 10.3233/JAD-160248.

Kenny RA, Coen RF, Frewen J, Donoghue OA, Cronin H, Savva GM. Normative values of cognitive and physical function in older adults: findings from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2013 May;61 Suppl 2:S279-90. doi:

Trampari E., Webber M., Savva G., Martins L., Ravi A., Wickham G., Holden E.. (2020)

Exposure of Salmonella biofilms to sub-lethal concentrations of antibiotics rapidly selects for resistance but with collateral tradeoffs

npj biofilms and microbes

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Webber M., Yasir M., Turner K., Bastkowski S., Baker D., Page A., Telatin A., Savva G., Charles I.. (2020)

TraDIS-Xpress: a high-resolution whole-genome assay identifies novel mechanisms of triclosan action and resistance.

Genome Research, 30, 239-249

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Richardson K., Wharton S. B., Grossi C. M., Matthews F. E., Fox C., Maidment I., Loke Y. K., Steel N., Arthur A., Myint P. K., Boustani M., Campbell N., Robinson L., Brayne C., Savva G.. (2020)

Neuropathological Correlates of Cumulative Benzodiazepine and Anticholinergic Drug Use

Journal of Alzheimers Disease

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Aldus C. F., Arthur A., Dennington-Price A., Millac P., Richmond P., Dening T., Fox C., Matthews F. E., Robinson L., Stephan B. C. M., Brayne C., Savva G.. (2020)

Undiagnosed Dementia in Primary Care: A Record Linkage Study

NIHR Journals Library

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Arthur A., Savva G., Barnes L. E., Borjian-Boroojeny A., Dening T., Jagger C., Matthews F. E., Robinson L., Brayne C., Brayne C.. (2020)

Changing prevalence and treatment of depression among older people over two decades.

The British journal of psychiatry : the journal of mental science, 216, 49-54

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uligoj T,Vigsnæs LK,Abbeele PVD,Apostolou A,Karalis K,Savva GM,McConnell B,Juge N. (2020)

Effects of Human Milk Oligosaccharides on the Adult Gut Microbiota and Barrier Function

Nutrients, 12(9):E2808.

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Traka M., Melchini A., Coode-Bate J., Al-Kadhi O., Shikha S., Defernez M., Troncoso Rey P., Kibblewhite H., O'Neill C., Bernuzzi F., Mythen L., Hughes J., Needs P., Dainty J., Savva G., Mills R., Ball R., Cooper C., Mithen R.. (2019)

Transcriptional changes in prostate of men on active surveillance following a 12-month glucoraphanin-rich broccoli intervention – results from the ESCAPE randomized controlled trial


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