Trust awarded £12 million in research funding

15 September 2016

The Trust which runs the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham will receive more than £12 million from the Government as part of a record package of research funding announced today by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Twenty NHS and university partnerships across England have each been awarded funding, through the National Institute for Health Research, boosting growth in cities across the country.

University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust will receive £12,120,962 for research into inflammatory arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and inflammatory sarcopaenia.

researchfundingAs a result of the last round of funding, doctors and scientists from Birmingham were able to launch a trial of a ground-breaking new drug designed to clear evidence of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease from the liver. 48 weeks of treatment cleared symptoms in 40% of patients – giving new hope to patients living with the condition.

Dame Julie Moore, Chief Executive of University Hospitals Birmingham (UHB) said: “We are delighted the Trust has been recognised for its expertise in collaborative research and the huge benefits this brings to patient care and outcomes.

“Our track record of close working with international organisations, industry, the University of Birmingham and other academic partners, puts us at the forefront of the Life Sciences agenda to deliver the full circle of translational care – from bench to bedside.

“Drawing on our unique population demographic, we can deliver meaningful results that will lead to lives being saved and improved quality of life, for the wider NHS and healthcare economy.”

The bid for funding was supported by Birmingham Health Partners, a collaboration between UHB, the University of Birmingham, Birmingham Children’s Hospital and Birmingham Women’s Hospital.

Today’s funding announcement means mental health, dementia and antimicrobial resistance will be among the research projects supported by a record £816 million investment in NHS research.

Leading NHS clinicians and top universities will benefit from new world class facilities and support services built by the five-year funding package – the largest ever investment into health research.

Each of the 20 Biomedical Research Centres will host the development of new, ground-breaking treatments, diagnostics, prevention and care for patients in a wide range of diseases like cancer and dementia.

Mental health research will see funding increase to nearly £70 million, dementia to over £45 million, deafness and hearing problems will receive over £15 million and antimicrobial resistance research rises to around £45 million.

The UK is already a world leader in pioneering medical breakthroughs and this record investment will ensure this strong tradition continues. It is estimated that for every £1 the Department of Health invests, hospitals/universities will generate £6 – from public funders of research, charities and industry partners – a boost for the economy.

Previous rounds of funding have led to medical advances including:

  • Scientists genetically engineer patients’ own cells to attack cancer
  • World first use of gene-edited immune cells to treat ‘incurable’ leukemia
  • Clinical trials of new T-cell treatment for cancer
  • MRI brain scans to detect early Parkinson’s
  • Detection of the early signs of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Diagnosing Barrett’s oesophagus in primary care
  • Multi-gene DNA sequencing which can help predict cancer patients’ responses to treatment was launched in the NHS
  • New immunotherapy trial to test cancer vaccine

Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt said: “The UK has so often led the world in health research – from the invention of the smallpox vaccine to the discovery of penicillin and the development of DNA sequencing. Today, we are making sure the UK stays ahead of the game by laying the foundations for a new age of personalised medicine.

“We are supporting the great minds of the NHS to push the frontiers of medical science so that patients in this country continue to benefit from the very latest treatments and the highest standards of care.”