Centres of Excellence

Within the Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy we are continuously investing in major developments, expansion and improvements to our clinical research facilities. Our centres help us to deliver the very latest scientific research findings.

Cancer Research UK Birmingham Centre

The new Cancer Research UK Birmingham Centre opened on 1 April 2017. The Directors, Professor Benjamin E Willcox (non-clinical) and Professor Gary Middleton (clinical), are both located within the Institute. However, the Centre draws on strong research groups across the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, including the Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences. 

Together with the Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC), led by Professor Dion Morton, and the Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit (CRCTU), led by Professor Pam Kearns, the Centre offers a unified approach to cancer research spanning discovery science, pre-clinical/translational research, clinical trials and applied health research in one of the largest UK catchment areas for cancer treatment, with a diverse regional population of over 5.5 million.

NIHR Birmingham Biomedical Research Centre 

The NIHR Birmingham Biomedical Research Centre (BRC), which also opened on 1 April 2017, has the aim of using cutting edge experimental medicine to accelerate access to, and adoption of, drugs, devices and diagnostic tests for patients living with chronic inflammatory diseases.  

The NIHR Birmingham BRC is one of 20 NHS and University BRC partnerships established across England and brings together the expertise of University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB) and the University of Birmingham, both members of Birmingham Health Partners (BHP).

The focus of the NIHR Birmingham BRC is to take scientific discoveries through into new treatments for patients with inflammatory and autoimmune joint, muscle, gut and liver diseases. It is led by Professor David Adams, Head of the College of Medical and Dental Sciences and Director of BHP, whose research is based in the Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy.

The research themes are led by University staff across the College as follows: 

MRC Bacterial Vaccines (Bactivac) Network

The BactiVac network was launched on 14 August 2017 following the award of £2.2 million funding under the Medical Research Council’s (MRC) GCRF Networks in Vaccines Research and Development initiative. The network is hosted in Birmingham within the Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy and is led by Professor Calman MacLennan (Honorary Professor of Vaccine Immunology) and Professor Adam Cunningham (Professor of Functional Immunity).

The BactiVac network will support the establishment of a global bacterial vaccinology network to accelerate the development of vaccines against bacterial infections relevant to low and middle-income countries (LMICs). It is the first network of its kind to focus specifically on bacterial infections.

It will achieve its aims through promoting cross-collaboration between academic and industrial partners in developed and developing nations involved in vaccine research against human and animal bacterial infections.

As well as fostering new partnerships through advocacy and joint meetings, it will fund catalyst projects and training to accelerate vaccine development, particularly at the preclinical to clinical transitional bottleneck, the point of failure for so many vaccines.