Professor Alice Smith

Professor of Lifestyle Medicine

School/Department: Population Health Sciences, Department of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 373 6425



I lead the Leicester Kidney Lifestyle Team an internationally renowned multidisciplinary research group which aims to help kidney patients achieve the best possible health and wellbeing through appropriate lifestyle management. The team strive to produce high quality research and to involve patients carers healthcare professionals and stakeholders as partners to ensure delivery of research that meets the needs and expectations of our ultimate user-groups. Our research portfolio includes ~20 single- and multi-centre clinical trials many of which are adopted on the NIHR portfolio and have recruited some 10000 participants from across England.


My primary research interest is the role of physical activity exercise and lifestyle management in kidney disease. My specific background is in inflammation and immune function but my translational research programme encompasses lab-based exploratory and mechanistic work outcome measure evaluation observational and epidemiological studies clinical efficacy trials lifestyle intervention development and effectiveness testing implementation and service evaluation. A strong track record of patient involvement and engagement and qualitative exploration of patient perspectives and experience underpins all the work. 


Wilkinson TJ, Yates TE, Baker LA, Zaccardi F, Smith AC. Sarcopenic obesity and the risk of hospitalisation or death from COVID-19: findings from UK Biobank. J Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle Rapid Communications 2021, in press

Wilkinson TJ and Smith AC. Physical activity and living well with kidney disease. Nature Reviews Nephrology 2021,

Wilkinson TJ, Miksa J, Yates TE, Lightfoot CJ, Baker LA, Watson EW, Zaccardi F, Smith AC. Association of sarcopenia with mortality and end-stage renal disease in those with chronic kidney disease: a UK Biobank study. Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle 2021;12:586-598 DOI: 10.1002/jcsm.12705

Baker LA, March DS, Wilkinson TJ, Billany RE, Bishop NC, Castle EM, Chilcot J, Davies MD, Graham-Brown MPM, Greenwood SA, Junglee NA, Kanavaki AM, Lightfoot CJ, Macdonald JH, Rossetti GMK, Smith AC, Burton JO. Clinical Practice Guideline : Exercise and Lifestyle in Chronic Kidney Disease. Renal Association 2021

Lightfoot CJ, Wilkinson TJ, Memory KE, Palmer J, Smith AC. Reliability and Validity of the Patient Activation Measure in Kidney Disease. Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 2021, 16 (6) 880-888 DOI: 10.2215/CJN.19611220

Wilkinson TJ, Clarke AL, Nixon DGD, Hull KL, Song Y, Burton JO, Yates T, Smith AC. Prevalence and correlates of physical activity across kidney disease stages: an observational multicentre study. Nephrol Dial Transplant 2021 36(4), 641-649 doi: 10.1093/ndt/gfz235

Watson EL, Baker LA, Wilkinson TJ, Gould DW, Graham-Brown MPG, Major RW, Ashford RU, Philp A, Smith AC. Reductions in skeletal muscle mitochondrial mass are not restored following exercise training in patients with Chronic Kidney Disease. FASEB J. 2020 Jan;34(1):1755-1767. doi: 10.1096/fj.201901936RR.

Gould DW, Watson EL, Wilkinson TJ, Wormleighton J, Xenophontos S, Smith AC. Ultrasound assessment of muscle mass in response to exercise training in chronic kidney disease: a comparison with MRI. J Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle 2019, 10(4):748-755, doi: 10.1002/jcsm.12429

Watson EL, Gould DW, Wilkinson TJ, Xenophontos S, Clarke AL, Vogt BP, Viana JL, Smith AC. 12 weeks combined resistance and aerobic training confers greater benefits than aerobic alone in non-dialysis CKD. American Journal of Physiology-Renal Physiology 2018 DOI: 10.1152/ajprenal.00012.2018. 

Viana JL, Bishop NC, Kosmadakis G, Watson EL, Bevington A, Feehally J and Smith AC. Exercise in Chronic Kidney Disease: Impact on Immunity and Inflammation. J Am Soc Nephrol 2014, 25(9):2121-30. 


Lifestyle and self-management Patient Activation in Chronic Disease Physical function and muscle dysfunction in chronic disease 


Personal Tutor for MBChB Phase 1

Press and media

Chronic kidney disease : self-management lifestyle patient experience


Leicester Kidney Lifestyle Team : Standardised Outcomes in Nephrology : Global Renal Exercise : UKKRC Exercise & Lifestyle Clinical Studies Group : 


Bsc (Hons) MSc PhD
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