The overall aim of our proposal is to build on the strengths of an existing European network for research into causes and maintaining factors in anxiety disorders and to extend these by establishing firmer research collaboration with the University of Cape Town in South Africa.
Through establishing this research exchange, we aim to share knowledge and expertise among participating centres, and ensure a comprehensive translational research approach in anxiety disorders, relevant to the needs of developed and developing societies.
The exchange scheme has three broad objectives. First, to develop a collaborative international database for the detailed characterisation of large samples of patients, across the range of anxiety disorders. Second, to provide exchange researchers with a range of complementary training opportunities, gaining experience in innovative investigations in anxiety disorders. These opportunities include characterisation of differing endophenotypes across diagnoses; using neuroimaging, genetic polymorphism and other techniques to bridge the gap between preclinical and clinical studies; and identifying predictors of clinical outcome and treatment response using dimensional and other approaches. Third, to establish a firm platform to support subsequent pragmatic randomised effectiveness trials in patients who have not responded to previous treatment interventions.
The value of the scheme is in its capacity to facilitate access to additional and larger clinical populations, to include centres of research excellence across many countries, and to share the knowledge and expertise of leading researchers with long-standing and wide-ranging interests in anxiety disorders. Furthermore, the training opportunities within the scheme would increase the knowledge and skills of the ‘next generation’ of anxiety disorder researchers and thereby contribute to efforts to meet the challenges imposed by these common, burdensome and costly medical conditions.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeMC-IRSES - International research staff exchange scheme (IRSES)