The new project has been funded by Arthritis Research UK and the University of Birmingham will play a major role in the study.  Researchers at the new three-site centre, led by Professor Chris Buckley, Arthritis Research UK professor of rheumatology, will investigate the underlying causes of rheumatoid arthritis. He will work alongside the Universities of Glasgow and Newcastle.  They will focus on how the condition is caused and why it continues resulting in chronic inflammation in the joints which cannot be suppressed in at least a third of patients, despite treatment with modern therapies.

Although much of the research will be laboratory-based basic science, the ultimate aim of the centre will be to develop new therapies that will provide patients with specific treatment that will work best for them early without the need to try and array of different drugs.