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Southampton Clinical Trials Unit (SCTU)


Our non-cancer portfolio covers a wide range of disease areas and disciplines.
  • We maintain a broad portfolio, with a particular interest in respiratory disease, infections and antibiotic resistance, liver disease, cardiovascular disease, primary care and herbal treatments.
  • We can develop and conduct a broad range of trials, from drug trials and complex interventions, through to symptom control and digital technologies.
  • We are closely linked with the NIHR Southampton Biomedical Research Centre, where our Director is a co-investigator on the respiratory theme.
  • Our team has expertise in trial methodology and qualitative research with the aim of improving trial design and research outcomes for the research community, trial participants and healthcare providers.

Our statisticians are at the forefront of innovative trial development, such as the use of adaptive Bayesian designs for phase I dose-finding studies, as used in the AGILE COVID-19 platform.

Portfolio highlights

Effective non-antibiotic oral treatment for acne

The NIHR-funded SAFA trial has shown that a cheap and readily available drug, used to treat high blood pressure, could help the thousands of women who suffer from persistent acne.

Read about reducing antibiotic use and improving acne outcomes for women

Clinical trial aims to reduce sudden cardiac deaths

The BRITISH study aims to work out which patients may benefit from having a defibrillator fitted under the skin in their chest which can shock the heart if it goes into cardiac arrest.

Read more about our BRITISH trial

Identifying therapies to treat COVID-19

SCTU is part of the AGILE COVID-19 Drug Testing Initiative, a UK-wide collaboration which was set up in Summer 2020 to test novel therapeutics with the potential to treat COVID-19 and bring them into early phase clinical trials.

Read more about the AGILE COVID-19 therapies 

Talking therapy can reduce menopausal symptoms for women with breast cancer

The MENOS4 study showed that symptoms such as hot flushes and night sweats, experienced by women with breast cancer, can be reduced through group cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) delivered by breast care nurses.

Read more about MENOS4 study