Diet and Activity Research Translation (DART) Collaboration

The NIHR DART Collaboration was established to ensure a step increase in the quality and quantity of research conducted across the country in diet, nutrition, physical activity and sedentary behaviours.

These  behaviours underpin all the major chronic long-term conditions challenging the NHS and the Collaboration was set up to create a collective voice within the academic and clinical community in partnership with industry, charities and other partners to tackle these challenges.

The NIHR DART Collaboration is developing:

  • a common strategy for maximising the impact of diet, nutrition, physical activity and sedentary behaviour research across the country
  • tools and resources that are fit-for-purpose for measurement of dietary and activity metrics
  • training events for academics and health care professionals
  • a network to enable working with industry, charities and other partners in sectors such as wearables and food industry
  • addressing unmet research needs and developing a strategic approach to the grand challenges in this research area. For example, a life course approach to obesity including both therapeutic and public health preventative approaches.


 The Collaboration’s themes of excellence in Diet and Physical Activity include:

  • Phenotyping/Genotyping
  • Obesity/Appetite control
  • Cardiometabolic disease
  • Populations of Interest
  • Gastrointestinal Health.

Diet, nutrition, and physical inactivity underpin all the major chronic long-term conditions challenging the NHS. By pooling our collective expertise and through stronger cross-sector and cross-disciplinary partnerships we can tackle the major nutrition and activity research challenges facing our society.”

Prof Melanie Davies, Chair of the DART Collaboration


The breadth of diet and activity expertise in the UK

This map shows the locations of some of the key diet and activity centres based across the UK (listed in the table below) which are part of this Collaboration.

The NIHR DART Collaboration members are leading researchers based in nine of the NIHR’s Biomedical Research Centres (BRC), chaired by Professor Melanie Davies from the NIHR Leicester BRC.

List of partner organisations


Academic leads

NIHR Bristol Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Andy Ness

Prof Julian Hamilton-Shield

NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Nita Forouhi

Dr Soren Brage

NIHR Guy's & St Thomas' Biomedical Research Centre

Dr Louise Goff

NIHR Imperial Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Gary Frost

Dr Ed Chambers

NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Melanie Davies

Prof David Stensel

NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre

Dr Michelle Harvie


NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Sian Robinson

Prof Emma Stevenson

NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Susan Jebb

NIHR Southampton Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Keith Godfrey

Professor Philip Calder

NIHR UCLH Biomedical Research Centre

Prof Rachel Batterham


To find out more about the NIHR DART Collaboration and how your company or organisation can partner with us, E-mail:

Related pages

Latest news about DART TRC