Sir Patrick Vallance, the Government Chief Scientific Adviser, along with Chief Scientific Officers from across government departments, visited the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Leicester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) to find out more about Leicester’s clinical research and work to tackle health disparities.
The visit took place at the Leicester Diabetes Centre which hosts part of the NIHR Leicester BRC Lifestyle theme. Researchers from across the 6 BRC themes (lifestyle, cardiovascular, respiratory and infectious diseases, personalised cancer prevention and treatment, environment, and data innovation for multiple long-term conditions and ethnic health) attended to showcase their research. The NIHR Leicester BRC has globally impacted research and healthcare, and has played a vital role in the UK’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Professor Melanie Davies, Director of the NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre, said: “Earlier this autumn, the NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre received £26m in Government funding to expand our work thanks to our impressive track record in research. We feel the centre is now firmly on the health research map, and the visit of Sir Patrick enabled us to impress the national and international importance of the work we carry out here and how it can help to influence health policy.”
The visit to the NIHR Leicester BRC was part of a broader visit to Leicester. The day began at the University’s Space Park Lecture and concluded with Sir Patrick Vallance delivering the Chancellor’s Distinguished Lecture to University staff and students, hospital staff, and members of the local community.
Sir Patrick Vallance, Government Chief Scientific Adviser, said: “It was a pleasure to visit the University of Leicester and see the strength of its research base. Research of this quality and scale is essential to help the UK find innovative solutions to some of the challenges that we and other countries face.”
Professor Nishan Canagarajah, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University, said: “We were delighted to host Sir Patrick and showcase the world-leading research undertaken by the University in collaboration with our partners. The visit was a great success demonstrating how the work of universities has a direct and important bearing on tackling the significant challenges of our times.
“Sir Patrick helped navigate the country through the COVID-19 pandemic and it was an honour to hear him speak in such positive terms about our research and impact.”