The Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit (CRCTU) which was established in 1984, is a centre of excellence for early and late phase trials in a range of rare and common cancers. The Unit has recently taken on the national paediatric cancer trials portfolio with support from Cancer Research UK. The Unit has longstanding expertise in haematology and hosts the National Leukemia Research Fund Phase II Team that provides support to clinicians in the development of phase II trials in haematology. The early phase trial portfolio incorporates trials from the designated Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre in Birmingham and the Unit supports the trials activity of the NIHR Biomedical Research Unit for Hepatology.
The Birmingham Clinical Trials Unit (BCTU) researches the best treatment in a wide range of medical problems, specialising in large-scale trials in chronic conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and renal disease. BCTU has grown rapidly since its inception in 1997, having been awarded funding of over £30 million, and now has 45 staff running some 20 trials. The Department of Health, who provide core funding, rated the Unit’s research activities ‘high A’ (the maximum score) and ‘world class in terms of quality and significance for health’ in their 2007 review.
The Primary Care Clinical Research and Trials Unit (PC-CRTU) is one of the largest and longest running academic primary care facilities in Europe for clinical trials and longitudinal epidemiology in community population settings, specialising in the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease and stroke (such as ECHOES, SAFE & BAFTA), the early diagnosis of cancer, chronic major disease care, and behavioural interventions. The PC-CRTU manages a GP research network, the Midlands Research Practices Consortium (MidReC), the second largest PC research network in the UK, and hosts the Central England Primary Care Research Network (PCRN-CE). The PC-CRTU has a lead role in the international collaboration for e-trial applications through the Electronic Primary Care Network (ePCRN), with e-linkage to routine clinical systems in the UK and US.