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The NIHR Oxford cognitive health Clinical Research Facility has been awarded £3.7m to continue its life-changing work translating innovative research into better treatments for cognitive health.

Funding has been secured over five years to fund the CRF, which has facilities at Oxford’s Warneford Hospital, John Radcliffe Hospital and the University of Oxford’s Department of Psychiatry. The networked research hubs aim to bring new treatments to patients suffering from a range of mental health and neurological disorders by enabling Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, the University of Oxford and Oxford Brookes University to work in partnership. 

The £3.7m funding was awarded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) – the research arm of the NHS, and helps to cement Oxford’s position as a centre of neuroscience and experimental medicine excellence. The CRF will complement the new £12.8m NIHR Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre (BRC), dedicated to mental health and dementia, and the on-going NIHR Oxford University Hospitals BRC, which has a theme dedicated to stroke.

This is a great result for translational neuroscience in Oxford.  Along with the awards for Oxford’s BRCs, the clinical research facility is fundamental to our ambitious plans for Oxford neuroscience. We look forward to working with the relevant BRC themes, the NIHR Clinical Research Network and our Oxford Academic Health Science Network AHSC partners to extend CRF capability and capacity in neuroscience and other clinical areas. - Professor John Geddes, Head of the Department of Psychiatry and Director of Oxford Health’s Research and Development

Research under the CRF aims to enable the NHS to offer innovative treatments to people experiencing anxiety disorders, mood disorders, movement disorders and stroke and neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

Most recently the development of the Oxford and P1vital-Emotional Test Battery, a technique to assess the suitability of new anti-depressants and potentially for individual patients, means doctors and patients could know if drugs are working within days rather than weeks.

Stuart Bell CBE, Oxford Health’s Chief Executive, said: “We’re delighted to announce the continued funding of the NIHR Oxford cognitive health Clinical Research Facility on our Warneford Hospital site.

“The award recognises the ongoing work by the CRF and the close partnership of Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, Oxford University Hospitals Trust and Oxford University to bring innovative and better treatments to patients and the NHS.

“We’re extremely proud of the range and diversity of research taking place in Oxford to benefit the lives of our communities and progress medical understanding and knowledge nationally.”

Dr Bruno Holthof, Oxford University Hospitals Chief Executive, said: “The new NIHR CRF funding will bring together state-of-the art neuroscience research and imaging capabilities across our two trusts’ hospital sites.”