The NIHR Barts Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) is a joint partnership between Barts Health NHS Trust and Queen Mary University of London, bringing 6 million patients together with outstanding science and enabling ground-breaking discoveries to be translated into life-saving medicines.
By offering every patient the chance to engage in research we will maximise the benefit of new diagnoses and therapies for people with rare and common disease. We will establish personalised medicine enabling selection of the best treatment for our patients at the first opportunity.
Our vision is driven by internationally recognised research and clinical expertise in cardiovascular-related systems. We were in the vanguard of collecting and analysing blood samples from many thousands of patients to unlock the genetic make-up of diseases. We plan to reap the benefit of such scientific investments and the huge opportunity provided by the creation of the Barts Heart Centre (BHC), to focus on how our genetic make-up can influence disease or treatments, how studies of cells outside the body may help us to explain disease, and how detailed measurements of a patient’s problem may allow us to accelerate new therapies into the clinic. These include electrical or mechanical devices, some developed by our bioengineers, and others brought to us through international collaboration with new clinical, academic and industry partners.
Our extensive knowledge and experience of discovering medicines, how they work, and how to use them most effectively and safely is a key strength at Barts. For example, we have tested new medicines for high blood pressure in the lung (pulmonary hypertension) and we showed that beetroot juice effectively lowers blood pressure.
Our laboratory work, when transferred into patient care, has changed national or international guidelines for management of common disease. In patients with high blood pressure or rheumatoid arthritis, our investigators have led the way in finding simple tests that predict which therapy works best in individual patients. We will work strategically with UK and international scientists and industry to ensure patients benefit at the fastest pace and from new medicines and tests we will make available to the NHS.
Underpinning our BRC, moving discoveries rapidly towards better patient care, are sophisticated information systems. These allow patients who consent to be followed throughout their lives, and the blood and other samples they donate to be stored for detailed testing alongside results from state-of-the-art scans and other depth clinical measurements.
Short-term: to establish research programmes and training in our themes, building on investments in data and sample storage.
Medium-term: to bring several novel or rediscovered treatments to the ‘proof-of-concept’ stage of patient testing, working with Industry and start-ups.
Long-term: to initiate the definitive clinical evaluation of ground-breaking innovations.
NIHR Barts Biomedical Research Centre Barts Health NHS Trust and Queen Mary University of London Charterhouse Square London EC1M 6BQ