This year, Alopecia UK was delighted to be involved in the application
process for the UK Dermatology Clinical Trials Network (UKDCTN). After
completion of the Hair Loss Priority Setting Partnership last year, funded by
Alopecia UK, the UKDCTN were keen to keep momentum going and help stimulate and
support more research into hair loss by putting out a themed call for research
applications for hair and nail conditions (with one bid being granted up to
£10,000). Applications for this grant were for small scale studies, such
as pilot studies or feasibility work, which could lead on to much bigger
clinical trials. Only one application would be selected.
As well as supporting the advertisement of the UKDCTNís themed call for
research, Alopecia UK attended the final meeting where the shortlisted
applications were presented. The winner was selected by the UKDCTN
steering group. It was insightful for Alopecia UK to be involved in the
process and see how much work goes in to reviewing the applications and selecting
It was really tough for the steering group to choose a final winner as
the shortlisted applications were so strong. The UKDCTN only had funding
for one application but emphasised how strong all four of the final shortlisted
applications were. Being the first time there has been a call for
research applications specifically in to hair loss, Alopecia UK decided to fund
two more of the applications (with a combined research cost of £15,000). It
seemed such a shame to let all the work that had gone into both the submission
and review of these applications to go to waste. It is Alopecia UKís hope that by supporting
these small research studies, it could potentially lead to much bigger clinical
trials further down the line. Piggy-backing off the UKDCTNís first themed
research call for Hair and Nail conditions seemed like a good way for Alopecia
UK to start getting directly involved in funding research, something the
charity now feels itís in a financial position to do.
We are delighted to be in this position. Everyone who has got involved
with Alopecia UK over the past few years has really helped with the development
of the charity. Our annual income has increased from £20,000 to over £100,000.
Well done to everyone who has ever fundraised and donated to Alopecia UK! You
really have made a big difference and we hope that you will all continue to
invest in our future. We are still a small charity but our larger income
allows us to do so much more and in particular increase what weíre able to do
around our aim of research.
Our funding into research is small scale in the greater scheme of things
but itís a start and we feel a very positive one. We hope it reflects how much the
charity has grown in recent years (and continues to grow), having previously
only been in a position to support research by finding participants for
research studies rather than directly funding studies.
Thanks to the UKDCTN, being a part of the whole funding process has also
shown us a way forward with starting to fund future research. Realising
that we could do a lot with smaller funding pots, throughout the year we have
been chatting with researchers at various meetings and conferences we have
attended, asking them what would be helpful and how can Alopecia UK get
involved in helping to stimulate more research in to alopecia. This
shaped a funding idea which Jen presented at the British Hair and Nails Societyís
(BHNS) annual meeting in November. Jen was invited to attend after chatting
with some BHNS members at the British Association of Dermatologistsí annual
meeting. The BHNS meeting brought together many researchers currently
working on hair projects in the UK. After presenting the charityís idea,
Jen gathered further feedback which will be very useful in further shaping the
funding idea which we are looking to roll out in 2017, making an annual funding
pot available for research.
Further details about both the research studies from the recent UKDCTN call that Alopecia UK will be funding and the idea for annual investment into research will be released in 2017.......watch this space!