The Government has announced that it will accelerate funding into Motor Neurone Disease (MND) across the UK by cutting red tape and taking advantage of the country’s rich research infrastructure.
£29.5m will be immediately given to the various Biomedical Research Centres up and down the country in an effort to ensure the brightest frontline researchers have access to investments as quickly as possible, supporting research breakthroughs and medical advancements.
In support of this, the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) and the Medical Research Council (MRC) will collaborate to make sure the funding goes to the most appropriate places, at the very earliest opportunity.
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay, said: “Motor Neurone Disease can have a devastating impact on people’s lives, and I’m determined to help accelerate research to find a cure and develop innovative treatments.
“We’ve already invested millions to improve treatments and our understanding of this condition but there’s more we can do and that’s why I’m now slashing red tape to fast-track funding and ensure it reaches frontline researchers more quickly.
“I’m grateful to the United to End MND campaign, for their work raising awareness and I warmly congratulate Kevin Sinfield on his epic achievement completing seven ultra-marathons, as well as remembering the late Doddie Weir for his outstanding contribution over the past five years.”
The £29.5m funding package includes:
- £8m for early phase clinical research into MND.
- £12.5m for the UK Dementia Research Institute to continue to investigate the underlying mechanisms behind MND and its connections with frontal temporal lobe dementia.
- A £3m translational accelerator investment from MRC – which will be matched by NIHR – to join up other investments with the relevant programmes.
- £1m of funding to improve coordination of MND research, including the establishment of the MND Collaborative Partnership, enhancing cooperation between the voluntary sector, researchers, and other experts.
- £2m of additional funding into the MND Collaborative Partnership to zone in on existing data and research, further evaluating the underlying causes of MND and developing breakthroughs and advancements.
The residual £20.5m will be made available to researchers via the NIHR and the MRC.
NIHR’s CEO, Professor Lucy Chappell, said: “Today’s significant commitment to delivering Motor Neurone Disease research is a hugely welcome next step towards really tackling this debilitating illness.
“This detailed plan makes full use of our world-leading health research sector, and gives us the best chance of making truly impactful findings and treatments.
“Health research saves lives. We look forward to working with our researchers, partners and people living with Motor Neurone Disease to ensure the work outlined today is the best it can be.”