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2022 – Our Research Year in Review

This year provided further evidence of the central need for greater investment in high quality research into the causes and consequences of ME/CFS.

The International ME Awareness Day statement on behalf of the then Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, the Rt Hon. Sajid Javid, heralded a process “to drive high-quality applications for research into ME/CFS and support the research community to build capacity and capability in this field”.

ME Research UK has been a mainstay of such investment for two decades. The breadth of the work we have funded speaks for itself, with projects covering many bodily systems and organs, in institutions around the world.

As the major charitable funder of biomedical research into the causes and consequences of ME/CFS in the UK and, in terms of projects, the largest globally excluding North America, this year alone ME Research UK achieved the following:

  • The charity funded two research projects at a total cost of £286,224.
  • As we seek to build research capacity, we funded three PhD-level projects at a total investment in the future of £203,624.18. This research is taking place at King’s College, London (funded jointly with Action for ME), Edinburgh University and an institution abroad (still to be announced).
  • In answer to our June 2022 funding round, we considered 15 applications from researchers at top-quality institutions globally. The total amount sought is in excess of £1 million.
  • Three projects were completed with results due to be published in the near future.
  • Five research papers were published acknowledging the financial support of ME Research UK, including those from Dr Westermeier, Dr Sepúlveda & Prof. Scheibenbogen, and Prof. Nijs & Prof. Godderis.

In total, since our foundation in 2000, we have funded 60 research projects and 3 PhD-level studies, at a total investment of over £3 million.

Our strength is our commitment to delivering research. This sets ME Research UK apart as this is our sole aim, and we fund to match our ambition. We help build research capacity and capability, the importance of which was highlighted by the Secretary of State.

ME Research UK does not receive government funding for its activities and relies wholly on the generosity of supporters. It was therefore gratifying to see the level of support received during The Big Give Christmas Challenge this year. All funds received will be invested in additional research.

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