The UK government has announced that funding has begun on two ‘expert research centres’ and 11 biomedical research centres of excellence.

The government has invested more than £10 million into the two expert research centres in London, at St Mary's and Hammersmith NHS Trust (in collaboration with Imperial College) and at King's College Hospital NHS Trust, which will “bring together NHS professionals with academic experts from a wide range of backgrounds, including management and the social sciences, to focus on investigating ways to improve the care of patients.”

The centres were selected through open competition by an international expert panel “based on the quality of the bids they entered and their reputation for world class research,” the Department of Health said, noting that development grants have also been awarded to Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust worth up to £800,000 over three years.

Funding also starts this week for the 11 new biomedical research centres of excellence, which are set within England's leading NHS-university partnerships in London, Oxford, Cambridge, Liverpool and Newcastle and “are among the most outstanding centres of medical research in the world.” They will share over £468 million over the next five years to carry out research on major killers such as cancer and heart disease, as well as on other areas such as asthma, HIV, mental illness, blindness, and the specific health needs of children and older people.