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Funding programme is a valuable tool in growing research in south London

Funding programme is a valuable tool in growing research in south London

A researcher believes that CRN South London’s ‘Greenshoots’ programme is an effective mechanism in encouraging more clinicians to become Principal Investigators (PIs) on clinical trials.

The programme, which aims to support new investigators and emerging research, has enabled St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Consultant Neurologist Dr Pablo Garcia Reitboeck, to work on Motor Neurone Disease (MND) studies.

Dr Reitboeck said the programme also gives clinicians access to the right support needed to deliver National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) portfolio studies. He said:

“I would strongly recommend CRN South London’s ‘Greenshoots’ programme to anyone who wants to get involved in research and to take on studies as a PI. Being awarded this funding and being a part of the NIHR’s community has encouraged me to take on more studies.

“CRN South London plays a really important role in promoting research delivery across the region. I’ve really enjoyed attending the meetings at the network, where we learn more about the performance of studies in the region, and in being able to take part in the PI Essentials training course.”

Motor Neurone Disease is a rare condition that progressively damages parts of the nervous system. This leads to muscle weakness, often with visible wasting. According to NHS Inform, MND affects around two in every 100,000 people in the UK each year.

There are about 5,000 people living with the condition in the country at any one time.

CRN South London’s Specialty Research Lead for Neurological Disorders and Dementias and Neurodegenerative Diseases Research Network (DeNDRoN), Consultant Neurologist Dr Jeremy Isaacs said: “I’m delighted that the network's ‘Greenshoots’ programme has helped Pablo to grow his portfolio of MND studies.

“The more research we can do into this condition, the faster we will find a cure. CRN South London plays a vital role in supporting researchers and research teams in delivering high-quality clinical research, including drug trials that people can access across the region.”

CRN South London has awarded 24 individuals funding for 2020/2021. The next call for funding applications will be later on in the year.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the programme, please email crnsouthlondon@nihr.ac.uk.