International aphasia research network secures three-year grant funding

08 February 2017

The Collaboration of Aphasia Trialists, an international, multidisciplinary network of European researchers in aphasia, a communication disorder, has secured a new three-year grant from the Trustees of The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia.

The new funding has been awarded to the Collaboration of Aphasia Trialists, which currently comprises 150 members from across 26 countries, to support the second phase of its development.

The network was established in 2013 with the support of the European Cooperation in Science and Technology and includes experts in neurology, stroke rehabilitation, linguistics, neuropsychology, speech and language therapy, neuroscience, anthropology, audiology and statistics.

Aphasia is a condition, resulting from stroke and common progressive neurological conditions, which affects the brain and leads to problems using or understanding written or spoken language correctly. It affects around 250,000 people in the UK alone.

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) Professor Marian Brady, who specialises in the development, conduct and delivery of high-quality evidence relating to the effectiveness of stroke rehabilitation interventions, is Chair of the international Collaboration, which is working to enhance knowledge, skills and methodology relating to aphasia research.

The funding announcement was made by Professor Brady today (February 8) at the Collaboration’s Conference being held at the Erasmus University Medical Centre in Rotterdam.

Professor Brady directs a programme of work on stroke rehabilitation in the Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions Research Unit (NMAHP RU), a multidisciplinary national research unit funded by the Scottish Government’s Chief Scientist Office with academic bases within GCU and the University of Stirling.

Professor Brady said: “I am delighted to announce the support of the Trustees of The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia, which offers us an exciting opportunity to further develop our multidisciplinary expertise in aphasia research and to develop an even broader international reach to undertake ambitious aphasia research activities. These will significantly improve the rehabilitation and recovery of people with aphasia as a consequence of stroke.”

“The new funding provided by The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia will permit the early achievements of our research Collaboration to be further developed, the network to extend its reach to members beyond the EU and in turn additional gains in aphasia research to be realised.”

The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia is the only grant-making trust in the United Kingdom that focuses solely on aphasia. Henrietta Bedford said: “For a long time The Tavistock Trust for Aphasia has been aware of the importance of continually advancing standards of research within the aphasia world. We are thrilled to be funding the second phase of CATs. We are particularly excited that this means that the Collaboration can expand its remit and also include aphasia research from the United States and members of the Commonwealth, and beyond. We are excited to see how the next three years evolve for the Collaboration of Aphasia Trialists.”