Research

The Glasgow Molecular Pathology Node will build on existing research and development capacity and expertise in Molecular Pathology across histopathology and molecular genetics through increased staffing, training and joint working of existing and new staff. This will enable clinical research and healthcare to benefit from innovation in molecular diagnostics, including genome sequencing, especially in exploiting precision medicine approaches to clinical trials and patient care. In parallel, research and development capacity and expertise will be built in informatics. High-quality information technology is fundamental to acquisition and transfer of clinical information within and beyond laboratories. Clinical informatics, biostatistics and health economics enable collation, linkage and analysis of complex health data. The Glasgow Safe-Haven links all clinical information for NHSGGC patients using the Community Health Index (CHI) unique identifier, making it available for stratified medicine research. Informatics underpins the –omics technologies: cancer genomics is forefront, with new ‘actionable’ therapeutic targets identified and diagnostic pathways being established and the world class Glasgow Polyomics Centre is leading on discovery metabolomics and proteomics. 

This enhanced capacity and expertise will provide a common infrastructure to enable test discovery and development for molecular diagnostics across the areas of cancer, inflammation and cardiovascular disease. The research workstrand will build diagnostics pipelines which are fit for purpose in our priority disease areas, in collaboration with discovery researchers in bio-medicine, bio-engineering, bio-statistics and health economics and industrial partners.


GMP will focus on three research workstrands:

Cancer

Glasgow is integral to UK-wide network activities in several cancer types. Our workstrand exemplars are in pancreatic and ovarian cancer. Other priority cancers will follow.

PRECISION-Panc: Glasgow leads a UK-wide stratified therapeutic development platform for pancreatic cancer. This strategic initiative includes the UK pancreatic cancer research and clinical community, CRUK and industry (AstraZeneca, Celgene and others), with potential further partners including Innovate-UK through the Precision Medicine Catapult. PRECISION-Panc contains three essential elements of a dynamic stratified therapeutic development platform: Discovery, Pre-clinical Development, and Clinical Development. PRECISION-Panc will offer UK patients an Umbrella Master Protocol Clinical Trial with biopsy and molecular phenotyping for patient selection and biomarker discovery. This infrastructure is attractive to industry for the development of therapeutics and diagnostics. The molecular pathology node will provide a core to the PRECISION-Panc consortium through delivery of diagnostic-grade NGS assays to inform clinical trials and, with time, clinical practice.


Cardiovascular

The Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences (ICAMS), including the British Heart Foundation Centre of Excellence, bridges the gap between cutting-edge science and state of the art medicine with a focus on cardiac (heart failure, myocardial infarction), vascular (hypertension, stroke) and metabolic (diabetes, obesity) disease.

Fundamental to ICAMS’s portfolio is predictive and early diagnosis of cardiovascular disease (CVD) through molecular phenotyping and novel biomarker identification/validation, to be discovered in an integrated, efficient and holistic manner through the Node.


Inflammation

The Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation (3Is) delivers expertise in inflammatory arthropathies (especially in the ARUK Centre of Excellence in RA Pathogenesis), psoriasis and inflammatory neuropathies (e.g. novel glycolipid array detection methodologies (Willison)). Additionally, the Institute is building novel expertise in renal inflammatory/post-transplant syndromes.

The 3Is has strong pipeline of molecular diagnostics that predict response to first and subsequent cDMARD and biologic therapeutics in rheumatoid arthritis with inference beyond to other inflammatory diseases. The 3Is will integrate with the Node.