Sheffield´s groundbreaking clinical research is awarded over £3.1 million
Over £3.1 million will be invested in a state of the art NHS Clinical Research Facility at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals to develop new treatments to benefit patients across Yorkshire, the Humber and beyond, the Government announced today (1 March 2012).
The University of Sheffield, in partnership with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, will use the funding from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to support experimental medical studies, investigating diseases, potential new drugs and treatments at the Facility located at the Royal Hallamshire and Northern General Hospitals.
Sheffield was one of only 19 research centres chosen across the UK to benefit from the funding. Experimental medicine research in Sheffield covers a wide range of specialties, with particular strengths in neuroscience, bone research, rheumatology, respiratory medicine, communicable diseases and diabetes and endocrinology.
The research includes exploring new treatments in areas such as Motor Neurone Disease and Parkinson's disease, looking at new ways to prevent stroke, and researching new vaccines for meningitis. The funding will be spread out over five years from September 2012 to March 2017.
Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, said: "The public and patients think it´s important that the NHS should support research into new treatments, and we agree. These researchers will push forward the boundaries of what is possible. These are the people and the facilities where the very best new treatments will be developed for a huge range of conditions - from cancer to diabetes and heart disease. NHS patients are the ones who will see the benefit of their work."
Professor Keith Burnett, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sheffield, said: "Our long-standing partnership with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals puts us in a very strong position to translate our world-leading research into benefits for patients.
"This investment will enable our experts to continue their pioneering research and develop new treatments that will change people´s lives for the better. The University and the city have been at the forefront of medical research for many years, and I am delighted with the benefits the revolutionary Clinical Research Facility will bring, not just to the community, but nationally and internationally."
The University, in partnership with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, submitted the bid for funding, which was judged by a panel of UK experts in both medical research and in running clinical research facilities. Winning bids were selected on the basis of the quality and volume of world-class medical research they support as well as other criteria including the strength of their partnerships with universities and industry.
Chris Newman, Director of the Sheffield Clinical Research Facility and Reader in Cardiology at the University of Sheffield, added: "We are absolutely delighted to receive this funding. This represents a significant step forward in clinical research in Sheffield, and will lead to many improvements in treatment and care for patients. We have some of Europe´s leading researchers here in the city and funding such as this is vital to allow them to continue to make vital improvements for patients."
Sir Andrew Cash, Chief Executive of Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, commented: "Sheffield has always been a pioneer in healthcare research and this is another example of excellent partnership working in the city, to forge ahead with translational research which takes important new developments from the laboratory bench to the patient´s bedside.
"Our researchers, through our Clinical Research Facility, are working extremely hard every day to find new breakthroughs for patients. People can rest assured that this funding will be used as effectively as possible in benefiting patients in this city and beyond."
The Clinical Research Facilities provide dedicated facilities and support for clinical researchers across the Trust and the University to use, allowing them to undertake studies that would often not otherwise be possible.