Almost 70 applied health research studies exploring ways to improve cardiometabolic health were shared at a national event.
NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands hosted the Cardiometabolic Research Day on Tuesday, October 24, in Leicester, teaming up with NIHR CLAHRC Oxford to organise the conference.
Cardiometabolic diseases, encompassing cardiovascular, metabolic, including diabetes, and associated disorders such as hypertension and kidney disease, represent the largest health burden both nationally and globally.
In response, CLAHRCs have focused on cardiometabolic diseases and this was highlighted and showcased during the event. A total 68 abstracts of related projects were submitted by CLAHRCs from across the country and included in a special booklet, which was distributed on the day.
The projects were selected for excellence and current and likely future impact. The selection included examples of CLAHRCs working individually with local partners as well as examples of cross-CLAHRC collaboration.
More than 50 people attended the event mainly from CLAHRCs but also a few from Academic Health Sciences Networks. There were updates from several CLAHRCs before interaction sessions on both cardiometabolic prevention and then cardiometabolic management. It was then concluded with a group brainstorming session covering methodological work, working together and industry and multi-site interventions.
Professor Kamlesh Khunti, Director of NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands, said: “We at CLAHRCs play a leading role in helping shape research in cardiometabolic diseases, using collaborative efforts to address the challenge of prevention and management in this rapidly changing area.
“Cross-CLAHRC collaborations are growing rapidly as individual CLAHRCs develop and reach out across the national space for partners to collaborate with. Furthermore, CLAHRCs see themselves as part of a unique family of research centres with the ability to shape national and international practice and patient outcomes.
“NIHR CLAHRC research is saving the NHS millions and helping to save and improve the lives of patients, carers and the public across England, the UK and internationally.”
Professor Richard Hobbs, Director of NIHR CLAHRC Oxford, said: “An excellent day that identified many cardiometabolic studies across the CLAHRCs in a variety of important areas and using a great many methodologies. We were keen that the day fostered cross-CLAHRC collaborations but were surprised that some future joint working emerged during the day itself. We should repeat the exercise and try other topic areas.”
Feedback was positive and called for more interaction between CLAHRCs. One delegate commented: “Very well organised. Good range of excellent speakers. Broad range of expertise and research. Individuals from different areas. This is a topic that affects everyone.”
Another said the event provided an “opportunity to network and get gain an overview of research done in other CLARHCs”, while a further delegate praised the “group discussions on how to make effective changes”.