Launched in 2013 the aim of the UK Research Collaborative (CMRC) is to promote the highest quality of basic and applied evidenced-based and peer reviewed research into ME/CFS by bringing together national agencies, ME/CFS charities, and working researchers from across the UK who wish to work towards that common goal.
Progress in understanding and ultimately treating ME/CFS will only be achieved through increasing the quality of research; by coordinating a stronger collaborative approach to stimulate more research through bringing in expertise from outside the field and supporting early stage career researchers; and by working strategically to increase funding for research.
The CMRC Executive Board is delighted to announce that the Wellcome Trust and Arthritis Research UK have each made a £10,000 contribution to fund the CMRC’s second annual conference and support the ongoing work of the Collaborative. This commitment builds on the support from the Medical Research Council (MRC) which has, over the past two years, provided critical funding to support two conferences and the future work of the CMRC.
The conference takes place Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 October 2015 in Newcastle. Arthritis Research UK will be co-facilitating a workshop for researchers and Associate Members on fatigue, exploring what we can learn from research in the two illness fields and what further potential there is for collaboration in the future. Places are limited so do book now if you wish to attend.
Alongside this, the Wellcome Trust and National Institute of Health Research will be joining the MRC on the Executive Board as observers. This provides the impetus to commence work on the Grand Challenge programme announced by the CMRC. This will seek to achieve a more co-ordinated and joined up approach working strategically with mainstream funders, charities, researchers and people with CFS/ME to progress the research field.
Prof Stephen Holgate, Chair, CMRC, says “This is an incredibly exciting development for the research field in the UK but also more widely. For too long, we have seen considerable gaps in CFS/ME research and there is no question that this ultimately impacts on the quality of care, treatment and support that people with the illness receive. We need to see more researchers coming into the field but we also need to see the quality of research improve and a more proactive collaborative approach to tackling these issues.”