16 September 2016

UCL’s three biomedical research centres (BRCs) have won more than £167 million in funding from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to further world-leading biomedical research conducted with partner hospitals. UCL has received more funding than any other UK university, followed by King’s College London and Oxford University, which received £133m and £127m respectively. The total award for UCL includes £111.5m for the UCLH BRC, £37m for the Great Ormond Street BRC and £19m for the Moorfields Eye Hospital BRC.

UCLB has worked closely with the three UCL BRCs in their application for NIRH renewal funding.  Over the past five years UCLB has continued to work in partnership with the BRC’s to maximise patient benefit of their respective outputs.

The funding will cover five years from April 2017 and is aimed at taking the benefits of UCL’s world-leading research to patients through its partner hospitals.

The BRC awards are part of a record £816m investment in NHS research announced today by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Professor David Lomas, UCL Vice-Provost (Health), said: “This funding is excellent news for researchers, doctors and patients alike, accelerating the translation of our research into new treatments. Nurturing successful partnerships is a key priority and strength of the School of Life and Medical Sciences, and this funding will enable our strong partnerships with three world-leading hospital trusts to continue to flourish and grow.

Professor Bryan Williams, Director of the UCLH BRC, said: “This is great news for patients and great news for our UCLH/UCL partnership. Our mission is to improve outcomes for patients with some of the diseases most difficult to treat. This funding means we can continue developing some of the best science in the world at UCL and get it to patients faster than ever before. It confirms us as a world leading centre for biomedical research.

Professor Thomas Voit, Director Designate of the Great Ormond Street BRC, said: “Today’s announcement builds on the great successes of GOSH as a pioneer in treating rare diseases of children with methods at the forefront of today’s medicine, and will allow us to develop new avenues to understand the basis of rare diseases in children and to devise specific new treatments. Our successful application is testament to the dedicated support of patients and families who tirelessly help investigators and doctors to shape our research hospital of the future. Their engagement is central to all translational research efforts at GOSH.

Professor Sir Peng Tee Khaw, Director of the Moorfields BRC, and Professor Andrew Dick, Director of the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded NIHR biomedical research centre designation. This substantial investment in eye research will enable us to continue to rapidly develop and deliver life-changing treatments for our patients. With sight loss predicted to double by the year 2050 this vital funding for eye research has never been more important.

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