£460k boost for clinical trials methodology research partnership

A new University of Liverpool led partnership that will help advance clinical trial methodology has been awarded £460k from the Medical Research Council (MRC) – National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Methodology Research Programme.

Currently there is an urgent need for methodological improvements in many areas of clinical research. For example, challenges include reducing the time for the evaluation of new therapies, finding cost-effective evidence-based methods for running trials, and developing more robust approaches to analysing time-to-event data.

Launching this summer (1st June 2019), the new MRC-NIHR Trials Methodology Research Partnership (TMRP) will bring together a number of networks, institutions and partners working in trials and trials methodology research.

The initiative will be led by Professor Paula Williamson, University of Liverpool (Department of Biostatistics) and Director of the MRC North West Hub for Trials Methodology Research (NWHTMR).

The TMRP partner networks who will join the five Hubs within the MRC HTMR Network include:

• The Global Health Network (TGHN)
• Health Research Board – Trials Methodology Research Network (HRB-TMRN)
• Health Data Research UK (HDR UK)
• UKCRC Registered CTU Network
• UK Trial Managers’ Network (UK TMN)

In addition, groups from 24 universities are collaborating to offer doctoral training in trials methodology research. Together these studentships will form the new MRC-NIHR Trials Methodology Research Partnership PhD student cohort.

Eight working groups will specialise in specific areas relevant to trial methodology.

Professor Williamson, said: “The TMRP offers a fantastic opportunity to build on the achievements of the MRC HTMR Network while exploring new collaborations and avenues to make continued progress in advancing trial methodology, developing capacity and further reducing research waste.

“This is a transformational time for the health data research community, with a multitude of stakeholders all over the world. This partnership will help us to further the significant growth we have already achieved.”

More information: https://www.methodologyhubs.mrc.ac.uk/about/tmrp/