Clinical R&D

  • The Newcastle Clinical Research Facility (CRF) is a collaboration between Newcastle University and Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which, together with a number of specialist clinical research platforms, provide state of the art clinical trial facilities.
  • Clinical research is supported by infomatics and project management companies, including The Sowerby.
  • Centre for Health Informatics at Newcastle Ltd (SCHIN), InRotis, Datatrial, the Specials Laboratory and Quantum Specials.
  • The UK has the world’s largest single healthcare delivery organisation in the NHS. A product which is clinically trialled in the NHS and secures a CE mark in the UK can be sold into any EEA market without further regulatory requirements.

R&D in Oncology

The Northern Institute of Cancer Research is the focus of research excellence in cancer studies at Newcastle University. Its mission is to use molecular genetic information derived from human cancers to identify novel therapeutic targets and develop drugs that exploit these novel targets. In the most recent, Research Assessment Excercise (REA 2009), 75% of the research was classed as internationally excellent, and another 15% as world leading.

There are strong links between clinical staff, both ward and laboratory based, and basic scientists. This enables a small and rapid translation of research results into clinical practice and has permitted the development of new drugs from ‘bench to bedside’. The Institute’s mission is to use molecular genetic information derived from human cancers to identify novel therapeutic targets and develop drugs that exploit these novel targets.

R&D in Neuroscience

The Institute of Neuroscience brings together one of the UK’s largest groups of neuroscientists, with over 100 academic and clinical researchers. Exploitation of this translational environment is delivering new treatments for patient benefit and novel applications of the principles of neural systems. Research areas currently contributing to their commercialisation pipeline and IP portfolio include:

  • Medical implants – development of microelectrode arrays for cortical and retinal recording and stimulation as the basis of medical implants.
  • Visual Neuroscience – methods for highlighting information in complex visual environments.
  • Psychiatric therapy – development of a training programme to enable psychiatric nurses to deliver cognitive behavioural therapy for the treatment of schizophrenia.
  • Neural computation and network systems – development of a more effective and efficient rehabilitation plan for varying disorders of cortical function.
  • Diagnostic and Therapeutic Measures – identification of biomarkers for diagnostic and therapeutic intervention of various neurological disorders.
  • Psychopharmacology of addiction – developing and testing compounds for the treatment of nicotine addiction.
  • Neurotoxicology – understanding the relationship between environmental chemical exposure and psychobiology with the aim of developing compounds which would potentially protect the brain from such exposure.

Clinical Ageing Research Unit (CARU)

CARU provides an ideal high-quality environment for phase II – IV clinical studies in older patients. The primary aim is to facilitate the development of early assessment and intervention strategies targeted at age-associated degenerative conditions. Situated on the Newcastle General Hospital site, the unit is linked to the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Centre and adjacent to the Positron Emission Tomography (PET) facility.

Facilities offered included:
  • Facilitate the development of early assessment and intervention strategies targeted at age-associated degenerative conditions.
  • Two day-case assessment, one procedure and four fully-equipped consulting rooms.
  • A gait and human movement laboratory, fully equipped with Vicon system, posturography platform, tilt table and exercise treadmill, and appropriate technical support.
  • A sound and light-proofed visual perception laboratory, including eye tracker, electrooculography, and octopus perimeter.
  • Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) bone density scanner.
  • Blood sample preparation room.
  • Drug storage and dispensing.

R&D in Diabetes

Members of the Diabetes Research Group at Newcastle University are also practicing diabetes clinicians in the NHS Newcastle Diabetes Centre. The NHS Newcastle Diabetes Centre can organise efficient clinical trials with partner organisations, with access to a large pool of well characterised patients.

Diabetes Research Group:
  • This facilitates and promotes translational ‘bench to bedside’ research that links population based studies, detailed clinical investigations and cellular and molecular studies.
  • The Diabetes Research Group has successfully engaged with the privare sector to bring products to market and is always interested in discussing potential projects with new clients.

R&D in Ageing and Health

The Institute for Ageing and Health is the region’s prestigious centre for ageing, research supported by national and commercial funding:
  • Recognised nationally and internationally for its world leading Systems Biology Centre and supported by funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.
  • Direct access to one of the most comprehensive arrays of scanning and imaging equipment in the UK, available to commercial users for the development of new products and services.
  • Developed over 30 years and contains well characterised healthy and diseased material from elderly patients with a range of neurodegenerative diseases.
  • Co-manages the Newcastle Brain Tissue Resource with the Mwdical Research Council.
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