Newcastle University ranks top 30 in the world for liver disease research performance
In a recently published list of University rankings, Newcastle University ranked 30th for gastroenterology and hepatology across the world, as well as second in the world for numbers of highly cited papers.
Best Global Universities Ranking is a report by U.S News and World, and was created to provide insight into how universities compare globally. In the seventh annual report, Newcastle University’s gastroenterology and hepatology research was ranked 30th in the world, across criteria that celebrates global and regional research reputation, and publications.
Newcastle boasts strength in liver disease research, medical education and patient care, with a number of initiatives ongoing that demonstrate this. Liver Disease Research is one of the core themes of the NIHR Newcastle Biomedical Research Centre (BRC); a partnership between the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Newcastle University. A key aim of the this theme in the BRC is to carry out research that is directly applicable to patient care in order to the improve lives of people living with long-term liver diseases such as Primary Biliary Cholangitis (PBC), Auto-Immune Hepatitis (AIH), Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD).
David Jones OBE, leads the BRC’s Liver Disease theme. He is Professor of Liver Immunology at Newcastle University and Honorary Consultant Hepatologist with Newcastle Hospitals. He comments:
Liver disease research is strong in Newcastle, thanks to the join up between academia and patient care. Our focus is on carrying out research that will improve the quality of life for people living with chronic illnesses, and we do this through involving our patients in our research at all stages.
One of the further strengths of liver disease research in Newcastle is the access to high quality patient groups who have direct involvement in the direction of research. Professor Jones adds:
Some of the diseases we work with have significant side effects which considerably lower a person’s quality of life. Without a cure, symptom management is key to these people, and we can’t effectively carry out the right research for this without the input from the people who live with these symptoms day to day.
Newcastle’s high quality patient groups in liver disease consist of people across the UK who live with PBC (UK-PBC), AIH (UK-AIH), and people across Europe living with NAFLD (European NAFLD Registry). Support also comes from closely-linked charity groups such as LIVErNORTH who support research into the treatments for, and prevention of, all forms of liver diseases. Their invaluable input helps to provide further evidence, alongside scientific discovery, for better treatment options. Professor Jones comments:
We have been able to take our discoveries in the lab to the next level with industry partners thanks to the input of our patients and supporters. So often, research goals can focus on lab results, while we here at the BRC design studies to be directly applicable to patient need, and this goes a long way to making the work we do such a success.