ANTHONY Nolan and the Anthony Nolan Research Institute (ANRI) have a long tradition of supporting and engaging with researchers. Over almost three decades, the Institute has made significant progress in improving donor matching, understanding the immunogenetic factors that impact on haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and developing methods to combat the main problems post-transplant, such as relapse, Graft versus Host Disease (GvHD) and infection.
The new Independent Research Organisation status, awarded by UK Research and Innovation, is a step towards the Anthony Nolan’s ambition to increase its collaboration with other academics and embed research excellence at the heart of all its activities. Enabling an increased level of collaboration between scientists with other skills will have a greater impact, allowing ANRI to utilise additional resources and expertise, accelerating the access of new treatments for patients.
Anthony Nolan can now apply directly to the UK Research Councils for funding enabling it to increase its research capability. The additional funds will also allow the charity to increase its workforce in the vital areas of science and research. It joins other research-led organisations with IRO status including The Welcome Trust Sanger Institute; CABI Bioscience UK Centre; and Beatson Institute of Cancer Research.
Ongoing and recent research projects where the Institute has collaborated with partners include a collaborative project with Plasticell Ltd and The Crick Institute, funded by Innovate UK, to carry out pre-clinical development of a hematopoietic stem cell therapy product.
Collaboration is currently ongoing between ANRI and Bac de Sag e Texis (Barcelona) and NHSBT Oxford on the graft T-reg content and its correlation with cord blood transplant outcomes.
Dr Diana Hernandez, a Senior Research Scientist, told Charity Today:
“We are thrilled that UK Research and Innovation have awarded Anthony Nolan and the Anthony Nolan Research Institute coveted IRO status, boosting our potential to collaborate with renowned institutions around the world.
“Our mission is to improve and save the lives of patients through research and innovation, and ultimately to ensure there’s a donor match available for everyone who needs one. Our new IRO status will help us to attract much-needed funding enabling us to drive our lifesaving research and turn it into action.”