The Cystic Fibrosis Trust is expanding its network of cystic fibrosis (CF) centers in the United Kingdom (U.K.) to give more patients access to clinical trials.
Nine CF centers were chosen to be part of the Trust’s Clinical Trials Accelerator Platform based on their interest in clinical trials and the local infrastructure to carry out such trials. These “Affiliate Centres” will be encouraged to collaborate with participating centers to recruit CF patients into clinical trials.
According to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, this concerted approach will help establish the U.K. as a place for pharmaceutical companies to invest in new treatments for CF.
The program will include CF centers with different levels of clinical trial expertise, offering centers with minimal trial experience the ability to develop a CF trial portfolio, and the opportunity to receive support from more experienced centers.
Affiliate Centres will also be given the opportunity to attend bi-annual workshops and training, together with current centers.
The new centers that will focus on clinical trials for pediatric patients include: the South Tees NHS Foundation Trust in Middlesborough, NHS Lothian in Edinburgh, and Sheffield Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
“We were not able to join the Trials Accelerator at its outset, and so are delighted to be joining now,” Steve Cunningham, PhD, from NHS Lothian, said in a press release. “We endeavour to support our patients by providing them with the best opportunities for new therapies as they come to clinical trials. Working within the Trials Accelerator will help us deliver these aims.”
The new centers focused on adult CF clinical trials include: The Newcastle-upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and the Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
“As the UK’s newest adult CF centre, we are keen to give our patients the chance to take part in cutting-edge research,” Tarek Saba, MD, from the Blackpool Teaching Hospitals, said. “Being part of the scheme means we will be among the first to hear about new research studies, and we look forward to helping the Trust ensure the success of this important work.”
Finally, the centers focused on both adult and pediatric CF clinical trials include: University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, University Hospitals of North Midlands in Stoke, and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The 29 centers that now form the Trials Accelerator group covers more than 80% of the CF population in the U.K.
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