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Health and care research in Oxford is to receive £122 million in government funding over the next five years to improve diagnosis, treatment and care for NHS patients. Our department will play a major role.

Pipette dripping into test tubes

The funding was awarded to the city's two National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centres (BRC). The BRCs bring together academics and clinicians to translate scientific breakthroughs into potential new treatments, diagnostics and medical technologies that benefit NHS patients.

The NIHR Oxford BRC, a partnership between the University of Oxford and Oxford University Hospitals (OUH) NHS Foundation Trust, will receive £86.6m over the next five years to fund 15 research themes.

The NIHR Oxford Health BRC, a partnership between the University and Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust (OHFT), will receive £35.4m to support research across 11 themes. The award will create a network of centres of excellence in brain health across NHS and university sites in England.

The Oxford BRC - whose research covers a range of health themes including cancer, genomics, vaccines, diabetes, cardiovascular medicine and microbiology - was one of the five original BRCs created in 2007 and has just celebrated its 15th anniversary. The Oxford Health BRC was created in 2017 as a centre specialising in mental health and dementia.

Themes with NDCN involvement

NDCN has a major role to play in both BRCs:


  • Digital Health from Hospital to Home
  • Surgical Innovation, Technology and Evaluation
  • Preventive Neurology (led by Kevin Talbot, with sub-theme leaders Michele Hu and Peter Rothwell)
  • Imaging (major involvement through the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging)
  • Gene and Cell Therapy (co-led by Robert MacLaren)

NIHR Oxford Health BRC

  • Better Sleep (led by Colin Espie)
  • Brain Technologies (co-led by Heidi Johansen-Berg)
  • Dementia (co-led by Masud Husain)
  • Pain (led by David Bennett)