in ME Statement
IiME/UCL UK Rituximab Trial for ME
On 6th June Invest in ME announced that we were in discussions to
set up a UK trial of rituximab for ME patients and since that announcement things have been
progressing well. The charity had been working on trying to get such
a trial started since the IIMEC7 conference
- click here.
In updates published through June/July, we have stated that
all that is required for the trial to proceed is the funding.
As such, IiME began fundraising for this trial and invited everyone to
support us in this project.
Recently we arranged a
specific web site which has been set up to inform on all
aspects of the UK rituximab trial. This is at -
and we reiterated the
current status - (click
We have the facilities available.
We have the researchers available.
We have the best expertise possible available.
We have the means of fundraising for this trial available (see The MATRIX -
and we have a campaign to raise funds
As we have agreed with our advisor, Professor Jonathan Edwards, the proposed clinical trial
will undergo a rigorous peer review process.
reached this position thanks to the vision, efforts
and help from
Professor Edwards, Dr Cambridge, UCL and our supporters.
emphasised from when we announced the trial that the only
element required is funding.
IiME will continue organising and raising funds for this trial.
The IiME BRF
Rituximab fund is specifically
ring-fenced in a separate account for the UK rituximab trial.
The first part
of the trial will be a preliminary study which will be
designed to confirm and extend
the earlier work of Dr Amolak Bansal 
on B-cells but using a different cohort of ME patients.
Edwards believes this is a useful study in its own right and
a pre-requisite for the clinical trial. Meanwhile work is
continuing on the design of a protocol which will be
finalised after the trip to Bergen that IiME and Professor
Edwards have arranged.
is being made and IiME are committed to expedite this trial
as best we can. To achieve this IiME has recently been in
discussions with a charitable foundation with a view to help
in funding this work.
enormously pleased to announce that, thanks to the
extraordinary generosity and support of the foundation's
representative, our biomedical research fund for the UK
rituximab trial has now reached £50,000. This is due to a
donation from the charitable foundation which will match our
existing BRF rituximab total of £25,000 -
click here. The charitable foundation currently wishes to remain anonymous but
they have asked us to keep them informed of the progress of plans for
the trial and we are sure that the ME community will join us in
thanking them for this wonderful support
This now means
that the first part of this project can be initiated by
the UCL team without delay.
all those who are supporting this trial and we will continue
to provide information on the status of the trial as we
We now resolve to increase our efforts to raise the remaining funds
for the trial and ask for your continued support in this project in
the knowledge that it will benefit all people with ME and their
for this trial is being organised and coordinated by IiME so please
contact IiME directly if you or your organisation would like to assist
If anyone would like to ask any questions about the UK rituximab trial then please use the Contact form on the
rituximab web site (click here).
A status is
In summary we feel that the best research team possible to undertake
this trial is now able to begin the work
- taking a huge leap forward in ME research in the UK.