In a recent call, The MRC, National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and devolved administration in Wales and Scotland have awarded more than seven million pounds for an unprecedented initiative, the Patient Research Cohort Initiative, to create small, extensively-defined cohorts of patients to help detect, treat or prevent disease.
The cohorts in this pilot study are in areas of high unmet need and, where there are bottlenecks in turning research into therapies. The key aims of this investment are to contribute to scientists' understanding of disease and accelerate the development of new treatments, forming a key part of an overall strategy to turn scientific discoveries more quickly into health benefits for patients. Further, this initiative aims to promote the participation of the cohorts in studies conducted by companies and academics, and encourage interaction between industry, academia, charities, the NHS and patients.
In this call, thirteen cohorts initiatives were funded across England, Wales and Scotland, at a total value of £7.5 million. In this context, funding has been awarded to Professor Costantino Pitzalis and his co-investigators to establish the Pathobiology of Early Arthritis Cohort (PEAC).