PCORI Board approves funding to promote research partnerships between PCORnet and outside organizations

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Board of Governors today approved more than $20 million for studies that will use PCORnet, the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network, to test ways to improve care for people with arthritis, blood pressure, depression and irritable bowel disease.

PCORnet is PCORI's initiative to improve the nation's capacity to conduct patient-centered comparative clinical effectiveness research (CER) more efficiently by harnessing the power of large amounts of health data and patient partnerships.

Each of the four projects will actively foster relationships between researchers and stakeholder partners within PCORnet and in outside organizations, such as large patient groups, to support research using PCORnet's resources. Each of the studies also focuses on linking disparate data sources for a more-complete picture of patient care.

The newly approved awards are the following:

  • $7 million for a Duke University project that will determine whether a six-month course of abatacept, a common treatment for juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), given soon after diagnosis will prevent the advancement of joint and eye inflammation or the need for additional treatment.
  • $6.5 million for a study at the University of California, San Francisco, that will compare two ways of helping doctors improve their methods for controlling patients' blood pressure. It will also compare two types of home blood pressure monitors to see which is more effective at helping patients achieve personal goals.
  • $4.8 million for a Massachusetts General Hospital project about patients with severe depression comparing the effectiveness of usual care to therapy that uses a patient's genes to guide medication decisions.
  • $2.4 million for a study led by the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation to compare three treatments -- ustekinumab, vedolizumab and tofacitinib -- for patients with inflammatory bowel disease for whom TNF inhibitors, a class of biologic drugs, are not effective.

"These studies will enhance the PCORnet research that PCORI has previously funded while taking a crucial step toward promoting PCORnet's long-term sustainability by meeting the needs of additional research funders besides PCORI," said PCORI Executive Director Joe Selby, MD, MPH. "We're proud of the achievements of the participating individuals and organizations that have prepared PCORnet to develop and lead clinical research that will more efficiently answer important questions that patients and clinicians face."

More details on the projects are available here. To date, PCORI has invested $160.7 million in 39 studies and projects that use PCORnet's capacities to conduct a range of patient-centered research, including randomized controlled trials, observational studies and surveillance research. These PCORI-funded research projects have focused on obesity, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, multiple sclerosis and rare diseases, among other conditions.

The four projects approved today were among 13 CER studies that PCORI's Board approved for funding. Information about the other studies can be found here.

With these latest awards, PCORI's Board has approved more than $2 billion since 2012 to fund more than 400 patient-centered CER studies and other projects to enhance the methods and infrastructure necessary to conduct CER rigorously and efficiently. All awards were approved by the Board pending completion of a business programmatic review by PCORI staff and issuance of a formal award contract.



The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) is an independent nonprofit organization authorized by Congress in 2010. Its mission is to fund research that will provide patients, their caregivers and clinicians with the evidence-based information they need to make better-informed healthcare decisions. PCORI is committed to continuously seeking input from a broad range of stakeholders to guide its work.

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