Our Clinical Trials Units

Our core infrastructure of eight UK Clinical Trials Units (CTUs) deliver innovative and practice-changing clinical research that impacts the care and outcomes for cancer patients in the UK and across the world.

CTUs are specialist units with a specific remit to design, conduct, analyse and publish clinical trials. Our network of CTU provide expert statistical, epidemiological and other methodological advice and they centrally coordinate the delivery of multi-centre trials. Our CTUs are also responsible for ensuring that trials are conducted in compliance with the UK regulations governing the conduct of clinical trials and report to all the appropriate agencies, including the Health Research Authority (HRA) and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

We fund eight CTUs that specialise in cancer clinical trials. Seven of these are within the Clinical Research Committee Portfolio, focusing on a range of early and late phase clinical trials with clinical or biological endpoints. One CTU is in the Population Research Committee remit, with a focus on large screening and population research based studies.

CTU network objectives

Our network is guided by the strategic priorities set out in our Clinical Research Statement of Intent. The CTUs have shared scientific and operational objectives to deliver on the Statement of Intent, and we will work with CTUs to facilitate the delivery of these objectives.

Opportunities to work with our CTUs

Our CTUs are members of the NCRI CTU group and hold UKCRC CTU registration, which allows them to collaborate, network, and share expertise with other cancer and non-cancer trials units, and to work together to develop best practice and overcome common challenges.

The CTUs also work closely with the chief investigators leading on trials and with NCRI Research Groups to develop trials and shape the cancer clinical research landscape in the UK and internationally.

Our CTUs are always in interested in hearing from academics and clinicians who have an idea for a cancer clinical trial and would like to work with a CTU to develop it. If you are interested in developing a clinical trial with us you should approach individual CTUs or research groups (see below).

Directory of CRUK Clinical Trials Units


Review & funding periods

An independent, international panel is assembled at the end of each funding cycle to assess the performance of each CTU, applications from potential new CTUs, and the network as a whole. The current 5-year funding period began in October 2018. Each CTU is also evaluated against its objectives annually, to determine continued funding.

Clinical Trial Fellowship

Our Clinical Trial Fellowship award supports clinicians with an interest in clinical trials and who would benefit from further training within a Clinical Trial Unit. Fellows receive up to three years of training, with funding to cover salary, running expenses and equipment.

More clinical research opportunities

We support a broad portfolio of clinical and translational research through response mode funding, partnership initiatives and investments in clinical infrastructure.

More research infrastructure

We fund a network of state-of-the-art facilities at 90 institutions across the UK. From basic science and drug discovery to experimental medicine and clinical trials, our infrastructure enables research throughout the pipeline.