RESEARCH: Researchers at East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust have been awarded £2m to lead a multicentre study investigating different ways of assessing kidney function.

The award was made by the National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment programme. The study will also be co-sponsored by the trust itself and the University of Birmingham.

Known as the eGFR-C study, it will involve 1,320 people aged 18 and over with moderate chronic kidney disease from primary and secondary care at six UK centres – Birmingham, Canterbury, Derby, London, Leicester and Salford.

Participants will be followed over a three year period and will receive both “gold standard” and routine blood and urine tests of kidney function in addition to tests using a novel marker called cystatin C. It is expected that patient recruitment will begin at the end of 2013.

Dr Tim Doulton, East Kent’s director of research and development, said: “This study will demonstrate our capacity to work with colleagues at University of Kent, Research Design Service – South East and across the UK – including a major trials unit.”