Publish date: 28 February 2022

The Clinical Research Facility at UCLH has been awarded £10 million in funding to deliver cutting edge early phase health research in areas including cancer and dementia.

The award from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) for 2022 to 2027 represents a £3.5 million uplift received in the previous funding round in 2017.

The funding is part of nearly £161 million awarded by the NIHR to 28 facilities across the UK for the delivery of early phase studies.

Clinical Research Facilities conduct studies testing new treatments in patients for the very first time (first-in-human trials) as well as early studies testing the safety and effectiveness of new treatments for a wide range of diseases. They provide dedicated purpose-built facilities and expertise for the delivery of these high-intensity studies funded by the NIHR, the life sciences industry, research charities and other organisations.

The UCLH CRF is made up of three sites. The original site at 170 Tottenham Court Road hosts trials across all disease areas and is where UCLH’s large portfolio early phase cancer trials takes place, alongside trials in areas including gastrointestinal disorders and autoimmune disorders.

The CRF’s specialist neuroscience facility at the UCLH National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery at Queen Square, incorporating the Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre, hosts early phase research in a broad range of neurological disorders including Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s disease, as well as multiple sclerosis, motor neurone disease and other neurodegenerative conditions.

In December 2020 UCLH opened a new Vaccine Research Centre as its third CRF site to help accelerate the development of new vaccines and treatments during the pandemic.

UCLH Chief Executive David Probert said: “This funding award is hugely positive news and will ensure that the outstanding work being done by research teams at UCLH continues to drive improvements in patient care. I would like to congratulate everyone involved.”

Professor Bryan Williams, Director of Research, UCLH, said: “This important award will enable UCLH to continue to deliver what is often life-saving or life-changing, world leading research, to NHS patients locally and across the UK.”

Professor Vincenzo Libri, Director of the NIHR UCLH Clinical Research Facility, said: We’re delighted with the funding we’ve been awarded which will enable us to expand our cutting-edge portfolio of complex early-phase clinical trials in areas of greatest need, including neurology, cancer, obesity, mental health, endocrinology, infections, respiratory diseases, rare diseases and vaccine development. This is an excellent news for patients taking part in research and for our staff and investigators at our CRF across 3 sites.

Find out more about the National Institute for Health Research UCLH Clinical Research Facility.