Seven Centres to form new Cancer Research UK network

From 1 April, we’re investing £100 million over five years into seven Cancer Research UK Centres across the UK. The Centres in the new network will be Cambridge, City of London, Convergence Science, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford and Scotland.

We award Centre status to locations that perform the highest quality cancer research. Our funding supports essential research infrastructure including technical staff, equipment, pump-priming grants, and training, to further develop the breadth and depth of research at each of these Centres.

Our Centres bring together a network of research teams from local universities, NHS hospitals and other research organisations. They seek to understand the impact and efficacy of treatments to initiate new research ideas and programmes, translating cutting-edge discoveries from the laboratory into direct benefits for patients.

The seven funded Centres are central to our ambition to beat cancer, providing a key link between laboratory research and patient-focused studies.

Michelle Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer, Cancer Research UK

We award Centre funding on a five-year basis; the upcoming funding period will run from 1 April 2022 – 31 March 2027. To make sure that we fund science with the greatest impact, applications were assessed in a two-stage process culminating in interview and review by an international panel of leading translational experts. The process was highly competitive, and the review panel commended the high-quality of the proposals and strength of the overall network.

Standards were particularly high, in part, because our investment of £100 million is a reduction of around a third compared to the last funding round in 2017. While the pandemic has required us to reshape our research model and make tough decisions about the research we fund, this investment continues to provide vital infrastructure for bench to bedside research, as well as creating opportunities for the next generation of scientists.

The Cancer Research UK Centres receiving funding from 1 April are:

Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre
Director: Richard Gilbertson

Cancer Research UK City of London Centre (Kings College London, University College London, Barts Cancer Institute, Francis Crick Institute)
Director: Tariq Enver

Cancer Research UK Convergence Science Centre (Institute of Cancer Research-Imperial College London)
Director: Axel Behrens

Cancer Research UK Manchester Centre
Director: Rob Bristow

Cancer Research UK Newcastle Centre
Director: Ruth Plummer

Cancer Research UK Oxford Centre
Director: Mark Middleton and Tim Elliott

Cancer Research UK Scotland Centre (Edinburgh-Glasgow)
Director: Owen Sansom and Ian Tomlinson

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