About us

The Centre for Musculoskeletal Research (CfMR) is part of the Division of Musculoskeletal and Dermatological Sciences, and is led by Professor Anne Barton. It comprises of:

  • Arthritis Research UK Centre for Epidemiology
  • Arthritis Research UK Centre for Genetics and Genomics
  • Cochrane Bone, Joint and Muscle Trauma Group
  • NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) - Musculoskeletal Theme
  • Independent Researcher Programmes.

We have over 130 members of staff including 42 academics. The CfMR is highly research active and very successful as judged by high grant income (typically in excess of £5 million pa) and high quality publications (approximately 100 original articles per year with about 35% in top specialist journals).

Our position as one of the strongest musculoskeletal groups in the UK has been reflected in recent awards:

  • the NIHR Musculoskeletal Biomedical Research Unit in 2011; followed in 2016 by the NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre award - Musculoskeletal Theme (from April 2017)
  • membership of the Joint and Related Inflammatory Disease Translational Research Partnership
  • MRC Stratified Medicine award for rheumatoid arthritis
  • the award of two centres of excellence by Arthritis Research UK in 2013
  • EULAR Centre of Excellence 2016 - 2021

Much of our research is internationally leading; we are partners in many European initiatives and many of our Principal Investigators lead international consortia.  

Arthritis Research UK Centre for Epidemiology and Arthritis Research UK Centre for Genetics and Genomics

The two centres of excellence were formed in August 2013 following successful funding awards by Arthritis Research UK.  They build upon the unique research legacy of the Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit, with the major focus being understanding the epidemiology of the major rheumatic and musculoskeletal disorders.

They receive substantial infrastructure funding from Arthritis Research UK of approximately £4.6 million over five years. They also receive research support from The University of Manchester and the major grant receiving bodies such as the Medical Research Council, The Wellcome Trust, NIHR and other funding agencies. These resources support over 100 individuals working on a wide variety of different programmes and projects.

See:
Arthritis Research UK Centre for Epidemiology
Arthritis Research UK Centre for Genetics and Genomics

Cochrane Bone, Joint and Muscle Trauma Group

This group is one of around 50 collaborative Review Groups within The Cochrane Collaboration. It was established in 1998 and its editorial base has been located at The University of Manchester since 2005. Members of this Group – researchers, healthcare professionals from many disciplines and consumers - share an interest in generating reliable, up-to-date evidence. These reviews are published in The Cochrane Library.

See: Cochrane Bone, Joint and Muscle Trauma Group

NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre - Musculoskeletal Theme

The NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) connects world-leading researchers based at The University of Manchester and four NHS Trusts in Greater Manchester, with a joint vision to drive forward the transformation of scientific breakthroughs into life-saving treatments and care for patients.

We have a strong track record of musculoskeletal research having had one of only three musculoskeletal NIHR Biomedical Research Units (BRU) previously, which undertook translational clinical research in musculoskeletal disorders.

The BRU pioneered new methods of assessing early response to treatment in adults and children with musculoskeletal disease; new ways of preventing rheumatoid arthritis and its complications; new therapies for arthritis and new resources for patients to help them achieve the best response to treatment. This work forms the basis from which the research described in the BRC musculoskeletal theme is built.

See: NIHR Manchester Biomedical Research Centre - Musculoskeletal Theme

Independent Researcher Programmes

The CfMR has a number of independent researchers working on both genetic and clinical epidemiological research projects, see: Independant Researcher Programmes for further information