Clinical Study Grants

For clinical trials and observational studies of specific patient groups costing more than £300,000 or lasting more than 3 years.

Entry requirements

  • The principal investigator will be a senior researcher working in an established research institution in the UK. S/he must have a strong track record of grant support, usually from us, and an internationally recognised research profile.
  • Any multicentre interventional clinical trial, while remaining under the scientific control of the principal investigator, should usually be managed by a UKCRC-registered Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) and should usually include a member of the CTU as a co-applicant or principal investigator unless there are clearly justified reasons for not doing so.
  • For multicentre observational studies, applicants should consider a mentorship arrangement with a CTU. We will judge the need for this arrangement on a case by case basis.

Grant duration

  • Up to five years, with annual progress reports. We may consider a staged award based on proof of adequate recruitment and progress if deemed appropriate.

Award may include

  • Staff salaries. For example: research fellow, clinical trial co-ordinator, research nurse, where fully justified.
  • Research consumables directly attributable to the project.
  • Research equipment essential for the project.

How to apply

Preliminary outline proposals

Prospective applicants should have submitted a preliminary outline at least 18 months before the expected start date and received our approval to submit a full application.

To decide whether it is appropriate to apply, please complete the online preliminary application form following the instructions in the GMS User Guide.

Additional information

You will be asked to attach a single PDF document to your online application form containing the following information:

  1. Project title.
  2. Name, Department and Institute for each co-applicant.
  3. Background to the study including an explanation of its importance and novelty.
  4. Hypothesis to be tested.
  5. Study design, sample size, power calculations and outcome measures.
  6. Evidence of feasibility of target recruitment.
  7. List of key relevant references.
  8. Categorised summary of total expected costs and anticipated contribution from NIHR CLRN, its equivalent in the devolved nations, or any other funder (e.g. drug company). See Costing a clinical study for further information.
  9. A list of relevant grants held and publications for the principal investigator and each co-applicant.

Sections 1-6 together must not exceed 4 A4 sides, and sections 7 and 8 must not exceed 1 side each. Section 9 is limited to one side per applicant.

Please use Arial font size 12 or the application will be rejected prior to formal consideration.

Allow one month for outline to be considered.

Full applications

Once a preliminary application is approved you should submit a full application:

Additional information

You will be asked to attach a single PDF document to your online application form containing the following information:

  1. For resubmissions, include previous feedback and provide a detailed response explaining how the revised application has changed from the original submission.
  2. Abstract of the proposed investigation in less than 150 words.
  3. Background to the project. Include an explanation of what health problems are being addressed and the clinical impact of these health problems. Include details of systematic reviews and ongoing trials that are relevant to the proposed study.
  4. Scientific principles/rationale underlying the proposed research. Explain if the application addresses a novel approach.
  5. Hypothesis to be tested.
  6. Questions to be addressed.
  7. Pilot data. Provide details of the results of all pilot and feasibility studies that support the full study.
  8. Study details including all information listed in the Clinical Study Guidelines (Interventional Study) or in the Clinical Study Guidelines (Observational Study)
  9. Expected value of results.
  10. List of key relevant references.
  11. List of principal investigator’s and co-applicant(s)’ relevant publications.
  12. Brief CVs (2 A4 sides including e-mail address) of named staff for whom salary is requested.
  13. Supporting letters from collaborators.
  14. Quotes obtained for relevant equipment.
  15. Valid copy of ethical approval.

Please also complete the following forms and include them in your application PDF:

Sections 2-9 must not exceed 10 A4 sides. The PDF file size must not exceed 20MB.

Please use Arial font size 12 or the application will be rejected prior to formal consideration.

Decision process

There are no closing dates.

Please submit the application when it is ready. 

We will acknowledge receipt of your application within 24 hours and and we will advise when you can expect the result. A decision will be reached by the Chairs and Programme Grants Committee (four meetings a year) after it has considered external peer review reports.

As Clinical Study Grants are rarely awarded without revision, the application should be submitted 12 months before the expected start date.

Apply online