Research and Innovation
Research and Innovation
What is clinical research?
Clinical research is the development of improved healthcare, by using evidence to further our knowledge to create new treatments and/or approaches that are both safe and effective. We have around 200 clinical research studies running in our Trust, at various stages of activity; including studies that are open and recruiting patients. Between 1 April 2017 and 13 December 2019 we have recruited 3,452 patients to ethically approved research carried out within the Trust.
Taking part in research is not only about testing new drugs or treatments – we may also carry out research that using information from questionnaires, or laboratory tests. We do this to understand more about the impact of diseases, quality of life, and to discover better ways of understanding the effect of certain treatments.
We could not support hosting clinical research alone. We work in partnership with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), who are funded by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). Our Trust is within the geography of the North Thames Clinical Research Network (CRN). We are also grateful to receive on-going support of the King George and Queen’s Hospital Charity.
Our Commitment to Research
The NHS has a legal duty to promote research, and show evidence, whilst finding innovative outcomes to improve patient care, be it to do with new treatments, medicines, processes, or technologies that ultimately lead to an all-round better service provided by the NHS. Our research department commits to the implementation of the NHS long term plan. Research itself is core business in accordance with the NHS constitution, and forms part of the assessment of the well-led aspect of the CQC inspection.
Research and Innovation news
International Clinical Trials Day 2021
International Clinical Trials Day (ICTD) is celebrated annually on or around 20 May to recognise the day in 1747 that James Lind carried out what is often considered the first randomised trial.
This year the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is celebrating ICTD over an extended period in light of the vital role research has had with identifying treatments and vaccines during the Covid-19 pandemic.
ICTD isn’t just about celebrating with the staff involved; we need to thank the patients and public who consent to take part. Over the next four weeks we hope to be able to bring you information around Clinical Trials Day, our teams and the different types of trials taking place around the Trust including our recent participation with urgent public health studies for Covid treatments.
You can read about it in the section below titled Clinical Trials Day 2021.
We are on Twitter, @BHRUT_Research, should you wish to follow us to keep up to date.
The Trust also has a Facebook page you can follow to keep up to date on all the happenings around our hospitals.
On Clinical Trials Day 2019, our Trust’s Communications team interviewed one of our previous Patient Research Champions, Helen. Below is the article from the Trust newsletter following the interview:
It was International Clinical Trials Day (Tuesday 21 May), and our Research and Innovation team was working hard to raise awareness of the work they do, hosting a stall in the atrium at Queen’s Hospital. They were lucky to also have on hand one of their biggest champions, Helen Heagren (pictured), who has been on a clinical trial since she was diagnosed with stage four ovarian cancer in 2016.
The 54-year-old told us a little more about why she’s so passionate about spreading the word on the research that takes place in our Trust:
“I knew nothing about clinical trials before I was diagnosed. I decided it was the right thing for me, mainly because I would have given anything a go at that stage.
I had the drug Avastin in my chemotherapy and it helped to shrink my tumour. I haven’t had any treatment for 18 months; however, at my last scan the tumour had grown slightly so I’m being monitored more closely at the moment.
I’ve been really well looked after. I even nominated my clinical trials nurse, Tina Mills-Baldock, for a hero award as she’s been so brilliant, and she won! She just gets me.
The most important thing for me about my trial is that it’s given me hope. I think it’s imperative that research happens, our lives are worth it.
Now I do everything I can to share my experience and encourage others. My cancer is incurable but it doesn’t stop me doing anything – I don’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon.”
Urgent Public Health and Covid-19
The Covid-19 pandemic necessitated that research into potential therapies occurred in parallel to the outbreak and, indeed, was part of the treatment options offered to patients. The national research strategy prioritised Covid-19 research and such studies were badged as Urgent Public Health (UPH) research. Every hospital in England was encouraged to participate in these studies.
One of the biggest of these UPH trials we are participating in is the RECOVERY Trial. This trial evaluated potential emerging therapies that had shown some signs of improving outcomes for patients hospitalised with Covid-19 but needed to be fully assessed in randomised controlled trials to fully ascertain whether there was benefit from their use.
Patients with Covid-19 in our Trust were approached and offered the chance to take part in the trial as it offered them participation in research and access to therapies being evaluated, but also enabled them to help others.
Since the opening of this study at our trust, we have recruited 328 patients to this trial. We are proud to say that we and our patients have taken part in this study and have contributed to discovering treatments such as Dexamethasone and Tocilizumab, which have been proven to save lives. We have also contributed to data that has ruled out futile treatments for Covid-19 such as lopinivir/ritonivir, hydroxychloroquine, colchicine and convalescent plasma. Without this latter research, patients would have continued to be given drugs that carry side effects and do not improve patient outcome.
Some hospitalised patients went on to develop severe Covid-19 and were admitted to intensive care. At this point, these patients were offered the chance to additionally participate in another trial called REMAP-CAP which was aiming to identify therapies specific to those who were critically unwell with Covid-19. Patients were eligible to take part within 24 hours of admission to the intensive care (some ward patients were also eligible for certain aspects of the trial) and were able to have access to multiple therapies being evaluated including steroids, convalescent plasma, blood thinners, and immunotherapy.
The trial looked at how drugs worked in combination and the nature of the trial was such that patients were most likely to be allocated a treatment in the trial that was showing a signal towards benefit. We are proud to have participated in this trial as it has been pivotal to providing evidence for the use of Tocilizumab and therapeutic dose blood thinners in certain subsets of Covid-19 patients. Our recruitment to this trial to date is 19 patients.
We continue to offer the RECOVERY and REMAP-CAP trials to our patients and remain at the forefront with the national effort to discover therapies for Covid-19. Vaccination research is needed to prevent the illness from occurring, but therapies and a better understanding of the disease are needed to help those who go on to develop the illness despite the national vaccination effort.
We must of course thank our principal investigator, Mandeep Phull as well as her research team, and must also pay thanks to the patients who participated and the wonderful ward staff who have been very accommodating and helpful in assisting in the delivery of this research throughout the pandemic.
As well as practical studies, there are also studies that are more observation based, looking through medical history of a patient’s time in hospital, to measure a variety of different things. One Urgent Public Health observational clinical study we have been recently assigned to is known as ISARIC. As it is a matter of Urgent Public Health, patients are not selected for recruitment. In fact, we are required to collect the data from each individual admitted to the hospital who meets the required criteria. To date, we have recorded approximately 2,447 individual admissions to this survey. This number does not reflect the total number of patients admitted to our trust with Covid-19, as patients who have left the hospital but are readmitted at a later date also have the second instance recorded.
The summary of this trial, following the document changes to allow for Covid-19 research on 24/02/2020, reads as follows:
“New infectious agents, such as the SARS coronavirus, new strains of influenza, and HIV, continually appear and require new investigations to understand how the disease works and how it interacts with the person infected. There is an urgent need to conduct coordinated clinical research relating to the Covid-19 outbreak to learn more about the virus and to provide evidence to help decide treatments and to ensure an effective public health response.
"This study will provide rapid, coordinated clinical investigation of patients with confirmed Covid-19 infection. It will look at how the virus reproduces and is excreted by the body, how the body responds to infection and treatment over time and how the immune system responds. The study has been designed to ensure that as much data as possible is collected and shared rapidly in a format that can be easily added together, tabulated and analysed across many different settings globally. It is designed to be flexible to ensure the best acceptance by health care organisations.”
For further information about this trial, head to the ISARIC website.
*Please note – information is accurate at time of recording, May 2021*
Clinical Trials Day 2021
Our Research Team is involved in many different types of studies across a number of clinical specialties. You may have already seen some information about the Covid research we have been involved with, but for our last week of the 2021 International Clinical Trials Day (ICTD) campaign, we would like to showcase some of our non-covid research activity with you, as we begin the process of re-opening some studies that were paused due to the national pandemic.
Two of these studies that have been restarted are the ComPARE trial, an oropharyngeal cancer trial. This trial was first opened at our site in August 2017, and to date, we have successfully identified and recruited 13 patients to this trial. The other study is PROSPECT-M-UK. This is a study aiming to increase knowledge of brain conditions that are often misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s disease. PROSPECT opened to recruitment at our Trust in 2016 and will be recruiting patients for a few more years.
Tina Mills-Baldock, Senior Cancer Research Nurse provided us with some information about working on the ComPARE study: “I ensure that the patient receives all care and treatment safely and according to clinical practice and the trial protocol. I liaise between all departments and act as a point for patients with any worries, concerns or problems. This continues whilst the patient is receiving treatment, and when the patient is on follow-up for the duration of the study.”
Elisa Visentin, Senior Research Nurse working on the PROSPECT trial; gave us a short summary of what is required when trying to restart these trials:
“Restarting a study after it has not been active for a while can be time-consuming, as each required activity needs to be re-checked to make sure it is still in line with the current guidelines of the trial. Some aspects are very practical, for example, is the equipment still available and in good working order.” We also discuss with the clinical services to see if they are able to support the studies when they are re-opened, and of course, there are also the many considerations taken to ensure that patient safety remains the top priority.
We would like to once more thank all of our staff working in research helping us to get our trials restarted.
We also thank you, the public for always supporting and forever being ready to take part in research.
If you are interested in learning more about the two studies mentioned, please see the links below for further information.
If you wish to join a research study currently open at our Trust, you must first be under the care of this hospital. You should discuss your wishes to be involved in research with your doctor or clinical team as there are strict criteria for each research study and some studies may be more appropriate for you than others. The decision to participate in a research study remains yours, but you may wish to discuss your participation with your family, friends and/or GP.
|NIHR ID||Project Full title||Site status||Main Speciality||BHRUT Division|
|10416||The UK Multiple Sclerosis Register||Open||Neurological Disorders|
|17199||Immediate coronary angiography after out of hospital cardiac arrest (ARREST)||Open||Cardiovascular Disease||Acute Medicine|
|43094||Clinical Educators in Emergency Departments - CEED||Open||Trauma and Emergency Care||Acute Medicine|
|32889||Optimisation of Peri-operative Cardiovascular Management to Improve Surgical Outcome II (OPTIMISE II) Trial: Open, multi-centre, randomised controlled trial of cardiac output-guided fluid therapy with low dose inotrope infusion compared to usual care in patients undergoing major elective gastrointestinal surgery.||Open||Anaesthesia, Perioperative Medicine and Pain Management||Anaesthetics|
|33869||FLO-ELA||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Anaesthesia, Perioperative Medicine and Pain Management||Anaesthetics|
|43238||Critical illness related cardiac arrest (CIRCA)||Open||Critical Care||Anaesthetics|
|34023||Canadian Institutes of Health Research||Open||> Critical Care||Anaesthetics|
|38197||Randomized, Embedded, Multifactorial, Adaptive Platform trial for Community-Acquired Pneumonia||Open||Critical Care||Anaesthetics|
|30540||Genetics of susceptibility and mortality in critical care (GenOMICC)||Open||Critical Care||Anaesthetics|
|37390||BLING III study||Set up on hold - Covid 19||Critical Care||Anaesthetics|
|18218||AML 19: Adults with acute myeloid leukaemia or high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome||Suspended||Cancer||Cancer|
|1409||STAMPEDE: Systemic Therapy in Advancing or Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Evaluation of Drug Efficacy||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|16675||FLAIR: Front-Line therapy in CLL: Assessment of Ibrutinib + Rituximab||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|15938||AML 18: A Trial for Older Patients with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia and High Risk Myelodysplastic Syndrome||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|36735||SUMMIT: Lung cancer screening study using low dose CT to support the development of blood tests for early cancer detection||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|40503||Phase 3, Randomized, Double-blind Study to Compare the Efficacy and Safety of Pembrolizumab (MK-3475) in Combination with Lenvatinib (E7080/MK-7902) Versus Pembrolizumab and Matching Placebo as First Line Treatment for Locally Advanced or Metastatic Urothelial Carcinoma in Cisplatin-ineligible Participants Whose Tumors Express PD- L1, and in Participants Ineligible for Any Platinum-containing Chemotherapy Regardless of PD- L1 Expression (LEAP-011)||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|18137||PARADIGM OlaPArib And RADiotherapy In newly-diagnosed GlioblastoMa:||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|30967||ROAM||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|20443||TRACC - Tracking mutations in cell free tumour DNA to predict Relapse in Early Colorectal Cancer||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|42281||Myeloma XIV (FiTNEss)||Set up on hold - Covid 19||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|42313||MONITOR||Set up on hold - Covid 19||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|44365||THE SOCIAL CONSEQUENCES OF NEW TECHNOLOGIES IN BRAIN TUMOURS||Set up on hold - Covid 19||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|34487||Systematic Genetic Testing For Personalised Ovarian Cancer Therapy (SIGNPOST)||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|15909||Mesothelioma and Radical Surgery 2: a multicentre randomised trial comparing (extended) pleurectomy decortication versus no (extended) pleurectomy decortication for patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MARS 2)||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|18621||Phase III randomised controlled trial Comparing Alternative Regimens for escalating treatment of intermediate and high-risk oropharyngeal cancer||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|30433||Randomised, phase II/III, 3 stage trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the addition of olaparib to platinum-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients with TNBC and/or gBRCA||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|34473||A Cohort Study To Establish the Prevalence of Mutations in Patients with CML Who Meet the ELN Criteria for Warning or Failure and Patients With Ph+ALL With Detectable BCR-ABL1 Currently Being Treated With First or Subsequent TKI Therapy in the UK Using Next Generation Sequencing||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|39645||Quality of Life After Bladder Cancer (Q-ABC):
A comparison of patient related outcomes following radical surgery and radiotherapy
|Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|40432||A Phase III Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo Controlled, Multi-Regional, International Study of Durvalumab in Combination with Gemcitabine Plus Cisplatin Versus Placebo in Combination with Gemcitabine Plus Cisplatin for Patients With First-Line Advanced Biliary Tract Cancers||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|41941||Randomised phase II/III study of Rituximab and Ibrutinib (RI) versus Dexamethasone, Rituximab and Cyclophosphamide (DRC) as initial therapy for Waldenström's macroglobulinaemia||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|869||UK Genetic Prostate Cancer Study||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|1471||Radiogenomics: assessment of polymorphisms for predicting the effects of radiotherapy||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|9812||ICON8 and ICON8B - ICON8 Trial Programme (as per protocol v5 dated 17/12/2014)||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|10357||Leukaemia Lymphoma Research and NCRI Working Group Pick a Winner Programme (LI1) Trial||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|12255||Optimal Personalised Treatment of early breast cancer using Multiparameter Analysis||Open||Cancer||Cancer and CSS|
|4961||United Kingdom Adult Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP) Registry: An Investigation of Disease Progression, Treatment Effectiveness, and Co-morbid Conditions||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Haematology||Cancer and CSS|
|37452||INSPIRE||Suspended||Neurological Disorders||Cancer and CSS|
|N/A||Neurological Complications Associated with Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) Virus: MRI and CT Features||Open||Neurological Disorders||Cancer and CSS|
|40554||RIvaroxaban for Stroke patients with AntiPhospholipid Syndrome||Set up on hold - Covid 19||Non Malignant Haematology||Cancer and CSS|
|31694||Phase II Randomised, Double Blind, Placebo Controlled Trial of Neoadjuvant Artesunate in Stage II/III Colorectal Cancer (NeoART trial)||Suspended||Surgery||Cancer and CSS|
|N/A||Occupational Stress of Health Care Professionals at BHRUT during the Covid-19 Pandemic||Open||Mental Health||Corporate|
|31185||NOAH-AFNET 6: Non-vitamin K antagonist Oral anticoagulants in patients with Atrial High rate episodes||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Cardiovascular Disease||Specialist Medicine|
|17302||PROgressive Supranuclear Palsy CorTicoBasal Syndrome Mulitple System Atrophy Longitudinal Study UK (PROSPECTMUK)||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Dementias and Neurodegeneration||Specialist Medicine|
|18437||Parkinson's Families Project (PFP)||Open||Dementias and Neurodegeneration||Specialist Medicine|
|40906||CHIEF-PD STUDY||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Dementias and Neurodegeneration||Specialist Medicine|
|19837||DexEnceph: A pragmatic, randomised, controlled, observerblind trial comparing clinical outcomes in adults who receive
dexamethasone alongside standard treatment versus standard
treatment alone for Herpes Simplex Virus encephalitis.
|45388||Randomised Evaluation of COVID-19 Therapy (RECOVERY)||Open||Infection||Specialist Medicine|
|14152||ISARIC: Clinical Characterisation Protocol for Severe Emerging Infection||Open||Infection||Specialist Medicine|
|35831||MS-STAT2||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Neurological Disorders||Specialist Medicine|
|37685||The EMPA-KIDNEY Study||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Renal||Specialist Medicine|
|6726||National Studies of Rare Kidney Diseases||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Renal||Specialist Medicine|
|37304||RETAKE - Return to Work After Stroke||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Stroke||Specialist Medicine|
|33908||SALIVA TO PREDICT DISEASE RISK (version 1)||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Cancer||Surgery|
|20664||IBD Bioresource||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Gastroenterology||Surgery|
|43521||EAGLE: ESCP sAfe-anastomosis proGramme in colorectaL surgEry||Reviewing Suspension - Covid 19||Surgery||Surgery|
|35821||UK Cohort study to Investigate the prevention of Parastomal Hernia||Suspended||Surgery||Surgery|
|45676||Neonatal Complications of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Study||Open||Children||Women and Child Health|
|34058||Linagliptin and empagliflozin in children and adolescents (DINAMO)||Suspended||Children||Women and Child Health|
|39733||PReCePT Study – A cluster randomised trial evaluating the impact of an enhanced support implementation of the PReCePT quality improvement toolkit to increase the uptake of magnesium sulphate in pre-term deliveries for the prevention of neurodisabilities||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|Creating positive working and learning environments utilising the Formative Change Laboratory in Obstetrics and Gynaecology||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|39971||The POOL study||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|5774||Continuation of SAFE (Incorporating RAPID)||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|14162||Maternal and Perinatal Outcomes of Pandemic Influenza in Pregnancy||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|20626||GEM3: A double blind placebo controlled trial of a combination of methotrexate and gefitinib versus methotrexate alone as a treatment for ectopic pregnancy||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|14362||The Cleft Collective Cohort Studies||Open||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
|18346||The Cerclage Suture Type for an Insufficient Cervix and its effect on Health outcomes (C-STICH)||Recruitment on Hold - Covid 19||Reproductive Health and Childbirth||Women and Child Health|
To search for Clinical Research Studies nationwide, please use the NIHR’s search below. Please be advised, all clinical research studies have an inclusion/exclusion criteria to ensure patient safety. There may be trials that you feel you could be suitable for but please speak with your nurse or doctor, who will be able to advise you further.
Patients and the public are at the heart of everything we do, and who would be better to describe the experience of participating in research than those who have taken part in a study themselves?
What is a research champion?
Research Champions volunteer their time to help spread the word about health and care research to patients and the public, and to help promote across those groups who are currently less likely to take part in research. They also help research and healthcare staff understand more about the experiences of those who take part in research.
Anybody can be a Research Champion; you don’t have to have participated in a research study before. Watch below as Dr. William van’t Hoff, Clinical Director for NHS Engagement, talks about the initiative.
Alternatively, contact Ben Sartoris, email@example.com for further information.
Please follow the link below to see our performance in initiating and delivering on clinical research trials:
Our research team works over a number of different clinical areas. If you have a question or want to discuss about a certain clinical specialty, please contact the Research and Innovation Department either on: 01708 435 000 ext. 2372 / 2762 or email our generic mailbox:
To read about some of our research team, who participated in our Trust’s ‘In Conversation With...’, please view the links below to read the articles.