£2m in funding for global health research group at University of Liverpool

The University of Liverpool’s Institute of Translational Medicine has been awarded £2m by the NIHR as part of their latest UK-wide call for funding into Global Health Research Units (University of Liverpool, 2017).

The funding has been awarded to establish a new research group that will build on the personalised health approach of the Institute. The group aims to improve the effectiveness in Sub-Saharan Africa of warfarin.

Warfarin is the main anticoagulant taken in many parts of the world. It is used to treat deep vein thrombosis, and prevent strokes in patients with atrial fibrillation. Doses have to be constantly monitored, however, since variations in genetic makeup, age and size can cause either too small an effect from the medicine or even too much, the latter can cause bleeding in patients. Anticoagulation with warfarin is an important area of unmet medical need in African countries because of the lack of validated dosing algorithms and/or monitoring facilities. This group aims to improve anticoagulation by developing clinical dosing algorithms, and further improve anticoagulation quality by using novel technological advances.

Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed, Director of the Wolfson Centre for Personalised Medicine and MRC Centre for Drug Safety Science, said “This is fantastic news for the University and highlights the value that the NIHR sees in our personalised health research. It is also very good news for the people who, for various reasons, have to take this drug. By using our research and knowledge to improve the effectiveness of drugs, such as warfarin, we can provide help to improve the health and lives of those in developing countries. Importantly this funding will also allow us to train a number of African scientists which will enhance capacity in anticoagulation research.”

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