Taking part in research

Cambridge University Hospitals (CUH) are dedicated to making biomedical research both relevant and accessible to the general public, to patients and their carers. There are a number of ways in which you can get involved.

Not all involve taking part in a clinical trial; members of the public can join CUH’s patient and public involvement panel where you are asked to review research protocols and patient information leaflets, or you can take part in other ways. Visit the Research & Development pages on the CUH website to find out more.

Volunteering for a research study

You don’t have to have a health condition to take part in research, we also need healthy volunteers. One of the ways you can take part in research by joining the NIHR BioResource, whether you are a healthy volunteer or have a health condition. Watch the short video below to find out what being part of the NIHR BioResource involves.

Children’s research

This is Katie who has taken part in the artificial pancreas study at our NIHR Cambridge Clinical Research Facility. Katie met children’s research nurse Janet Allen, to discuss why children are asked to take part in research studies and the work happening with the artificial pancreas.

Getting involved

The following animation explains a little about what clinical research is and encourages you to ask about involvement.

Useful Links:

  • Join our Patient and Public Involvement panel – Find out how you can review research documents and patient information sheets. You can hear research proposals and take part in focus groups.
  • The NIHR Brain Injury MedTech Co-operative:  has developed a volunteer register for patients, carers and other interested persons to assist in the development and advance of healthcare technologies.
  • The NIHR BioResource: A panel of around 200,000 volunteers, both with and without health conditions, who are willing to be approached to participate in research studies investigating the links between genes, the environment, health and disease.
  • The NIHR Cambridge Clinical Research Facility: A facility for patients and volunteers who are participating in research (both adults and children). It supports experimental medicine and early phase research studies.
  • Be Part of Research: Find out what it means to take part in a clinical trial, sign up for trials, look for trials relevant to you and contact researchers.
  • Cambridge Brain Bank: Established to enable brain tissue to be used after death for research into neurodegenerative disorders such as Dementia (Alzheimer’s, Frontotemportal etc.), Motor Neurone disease, Huntington’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease etc.
  • NIHR People in Research: Opportunities for public involvement in NHS, public health and social care research.
  • Cambridge Cancer Trials Centre has trials running for many different kinds of cancer, alongside important information about how clinical trials work and why they are important.
  • The Cambridge Patient Led Research Hub (PLRH) supports patient-led research, working in partnership with charities and patient groups to deliver clinical studies based on patients’ own research questions.

Unfortunately we cannot provide specific health information or referrals to clinicians through these web pages. Further information about specific clinical trials can be found via:

Taking part in COVID-19 research

We have received lots of kind enquiries about taking part in experimental research studies at Cambridge University Hospitals.

At present, the majority of our studies are only recruiting those who are hospitalised with COVID-19. However, there are ways that people can get involved in essential COVID-19 research studies outside of the hospital.

There is a list of opportunities available and we will add to them as new studies open to recruitment.

Discover more about the NIHR Cambridge BRC

Contact us by phone, email or web for more information.

Events Calendar

Listing relevant events and training sessions for researchers and members of the public.