Since its inception in 2013, the UK CFS/M.E. Research Collaborative (CMRC) has successfully brought together significant numbers of researchers from across the UK and internationally with charities, mainstream funders and patients.
Aiming to drive interest and funding in CFS/ME research - which, as highlighted by the CMRC's 2016 M.E./CFS Research Funding report, represents just 0.02% of all active grants given by UK mainstream funding agencies - the CMRC has held four successful conferences, initiated and supported new collaborations, worked with mainstream funders and secured interest from pharma/industry, and brought researchers in from outside of the field as well as partners from charities covering overlapping illnesses.
Following a meeting of its Board in February 2018, the CMRC agreed on a new purpose, objectives and values, which replace its previous Charter. You can read an interview with Prof Chris Ponting, who took up the post of CMRC's Deputy Chair on 1 April 2018.
The CMRC's purpose is to promote the discovery of the biological mechanisms that underpin CFS/M.E., which, together with clinical observation, will drive the development of targeted new treatments for this highly underserved patient population.
Action for M.E. is a founding Board member of the CMRC and, as part of our research strategy, plays an active part in supporting its work. If you have any questions about our work relating to the CMRC, please get in touch.
The Patient Advisory Group (PAG) to the CMRC aims to support patient-centred biomedical research into M.E., using its the diverse voices of patients and carers patient to advise the CMRC and associated bodies and platforms (eg. the PAG is a registered stakeholder in NICE's current ME/CFS guidelines review). The PAG recruited a number of new members in December 2018, each with lived experience of M.E., including severe M.E. A member of the PAG attends each board meeting.
The CMRC's sixth conference will take place in Bristol, Tuesday 10 and Wednesday 11 March 2020. Registration will open in summer/autumn 2019, along with an invitation to submit a poster presentation.
The CMRC’s fifth annual science conference (view the programme) took place in Bristol in September 2018, with scientists, people with M.E., clinicians and industry professionals coming together to discuss research ambitions and bringing more collaboration into the field. Our 2018 conference playlist of presentations is available now on the Action for M.E. YouTube channel (please note that, due to the presentation of unpublished data, some speakers declined to be filmed); a short written report of presentations was published on 5 December. You can also:
Membership of the CMRC is open to anyone with an interest in M.E. research, with Professional (£20 per annum), Student (£15 per annum) and Associate Membership (free) available. All members agree to work within the values of the CMRC. You can apply to join by downloading and completing the CMRC application form as a PDF or as a Word document.
The Board of the CMRC meets four times a year to discuss the work of the CMRC and report on actions taken. Click on the links below to read minutes from the following meetings (please note all are draft minutes, before being approved at the next meeting):
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