OUR RESEARCH strategy

The research that Borne funds is focused on the pregnancy period and the factors and conditions in pregnancy that may lead to preterm birth.

our research focus

We seek to deepen our knowledge of the biological processes of pregnancy and childbirth to better understand the significance of changes in the maternal environment throughout pregnancy and define the mechanisms involved in normal and abnormal labour. Only by understanding the normal process can we begin to understand the abnormal and identify markers of risk in women that are likely to deliver their babies preterm. This understanding is fundamental to the development of diagnostic, treatment and prevention strategies to reduce the rate of preterm birth.

We are particularly interested in research that has translational potential for patient benefit. We do not directly participate in research associated with assisted conception, or areas of maternal health that are not directly linked to pregnancy or birth; service delivery research also falls outside our remit.

what we fund

1. We support early-stage research

We pump-prime promising new research ideas, giving scientists the impetus to develop their analysis and advance their breakthrough projects. We want to make sure that the best ideas, backed up by the strongest science, have the greatest chance to succeed. We invest in world-class early-stage research projects aimed at unravelling the science behind the complex biomedical conditions that lead to premature birth.

By offering a number of project-based awards to support the research programmes of tenured researchers, we enable scientists to take their novel ideas forward with preliminary data that enable them to apply for further funding from research councils and other grant-making bodies for larger scale studies, effectively leveraging the contribution of Borne’s supporters several times over the initial investment.

2. We seek to attract more scientific talent to obstetrics research

We are encouraging more promising scientists and clinicians to develop their research careers in our area of need.

By offering Clinical Research Training Fellowships in partnership with the UKRI’s Medical Research Council (MRC), we provide a means for clinically qualified candidates to obtain the research track record and skills required through a PhD or other higher research degree.

We also support talented post-doctoral researchers with their transition to independent investigator with a Career Development Award jointly funded with the UKRI MRC – an ambitious programme of research training that offers accelerated personal and career development to lead their own research plans and establish their own research team.

3. We foster inter-disciplinary collaboration

Experts believe that the answers we are looking for lie in the gaps between different areas of scientific specialisation. Until we can bridge these gaps, uniting the different pieces of the puzzle to see the big picture, babies will continue to be born too soon.

We bring scientists and medical teams together across institutions and geographical borders to accelerate discovery foster scientific collaboration through open access sharing of data and analysis. We invest in big science – cutting edge techniques and bioinformatic expertise – to help make breakthroughs possible.

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