In September 2010 Diabetes UK and the Chief Scientist Office (CSO) of the Scottish Government announced that joint funding of over £675,000 to establish a major resource in Scotland for research into Type 1 diabetes.
A key aim of the ‘Scottish Diabetes Research Network (SDRN) Type 1 Diabetes Bioresource’ is to develop methods for preventing Type 1 diabetes and its associated complications. Starting in late 2010, patients will be invited to take part during their usual clinic visits. A network of diabetes specialists across Scotland will ask patients aged 16 years and over with Type 1 diabetes to donate a sample of blood and urine. By combining samples with information on the patient’s diabetes history, the bioresource will enable future research into the causes and consequences of Type 1 diabetes, which could lead to new avenues of research into prevention and improved treatments.
The study aims to include up to 10,000 patients, with other centres anticipated to join as the study progresses. “The spirit of collaboration between diabetes researchers across Scotland and the two funders has been fantastic. Most importantly, people living with diabetes are hugely supportive of our work,” said study co-ordinator Professor Helen Colhoun from the University of Dundee.
The Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Health, Nicola Sturgeon, said: “We are delighted to be able to provide funding for this project which will be an invaluable research resource with the ultimate aim of improving the treatment of patients with diabetes. Scotland is uniquely placed to carry out such research and this project capitalises on recent collaborative working to make best use of patient data.”
Dr. Iain Frame, Diabetes UK Director of Research, said: “I am delighted that Diabetes UK is able to fund this project with the CSO. Although based in Scotland because of its unique electronic health record system, this project will have a huge impact over the coming years for new and ongoing research projects into Type 1 diabetes across the world. I very much look forward to working with this network of clinicians and researchers to ensure the success of this exciting venture.”
The project is being co-funded by Diabetes UK and the CSO, who are providing £451,000 and £225,000 respectively over the three-year funding period.