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Northern Ireland Clinical Trials Unit


HSC R&D Division provides core funding to support the Northern Ireland Clinical Trials Unit (NICTU).


NICTU is a UK Clinical Research Collaboration (UKCRC) fully registered clinical trials unit. It has a specific remit to provide support for the design, conduct, analysis and publication of clinical trials and other well designed studies.

The aim of the NICTU is to support partnerships between academic clinicians and health service researchers by providing the infrastructure to facilitate the delivery of high quality clinical research funded by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR), UK Research Councils, HSC R&D Division, charities and others as appropriate.

The NICTU are keen to collaborate with colleagues on clinical trials and other well designed studies, to provide a range of services including planning the outline proposal, through the successful running of the project to the dissemination of the results.The NICTU will generally collaborate on projects in any area of health or social care and these studies are typically funded from external sources.

The NICTU team has a broad range of research expertise across clinical research in clinical, community and general practice settings including:

  • trial management
  • statistics
  • data management
  • monitoring
  • health economics

NICTU also works closely with the NI Hub for Trials Methodology Research

Chief Investigators wishing to discuss an application for funding with the CTU should contact:

Northern Ireland Clinical Trials Unit
1st Floor Elliott Dynes Building
The Royal Hospitals
Belfast BT12 6BA
Tel: 44 (0) 28 96151447
email NICTU
go to NICTU Website


The UKCRC have a UK Network of Registered CTUs who have been assessed by an international panel of experts in clinical trials research. Their website offers a resource for clinical researchers and funders wishing to identify Clinical Trials Units (CTUs) that have expertise in centrally coordinating multicentre clinical trials, as well as in trial design, data management, and analysis. It provides comprehensive information and direct access to high quality CTUs across the UK which have achieved UKCRC Registration status.



The Northern Ireland Hub for Trials Methodology Research is co-hosted by Queen’s University Belfast and the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland, with the Director, Mike Clarke, based in the Centre for Public Health at Queen’s. Current staff profiles can be viewed here.

The main areas of focus for the Northern Ireland Methodology Hub are likely to include:

  • Identification of the research priorities of practitioners, patients and the public, and the implementation of clinical trials in these areas (with a particular focus on public health and mental health).
  • Methods to keep these trials simple and pragmatic.
  • Development of methods to improve the use of systematic reviews in the design, conduct and interpretation of clinical trials.
  • Evaluation of different means of presenting the findings of trials (to target decision makers and policy makers), with comparisons of various techniques, including the use of social media.
  • Use of record linkage data and information available in the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry and other databanks to identify potential participants for research and to target the dissemination of research findings.