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New research centre launches in Nottingham to focus on mood disorders

A new Centre of Excellence is being launched next week by the Institute of Mental Health in Nottingham, a partnership between Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and The University of Nottingham.  

The Centre for Mood Disorders, led by Professor Richard Morriss, will act as a centre that integrates research and education across the university, Trust, service users and members of the public within Nottinghamshire and it will work also with other partners regionally, nationally and internationally. It will be divided into three themes:

  1. Depression and bipolar disorder in adults - Lead Prof Richard Morriss
  2. Mood, wellbeing and physical health - Lead Prof Patrick Callaghan
  3. Mood disorder in younger people - Lead Prof Kapil Sayal

Mood disorders include depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder and related problems such as health anxiety and repeat self-harm.

The formal launch will take place on Tuesday 29th November at the Institute of Mental Health at The University of Nottingham’s Jubilee Campus. 

The launch event will include keynote presentations from Professor Timothy Dalgleish from the Medical Research Council Brain and Cognition Unit at the University of Cambridge, and Dr Roland Zahn from the Institute of Psychiatry, London. There will also be many other talks and posters covering different aspects of the Centre’s work.

One in four people suffer from problems with mood disorders in some part of their life and many people suffer from these problems intermittently throughout their lives. Yet in 2012 the London School of Economics estimated only 25% of people with such problems got any help form health services, let alone the best help. Collectively mood disorders account for more days in a person’s life lived with illness than any other physical or mental health problem. They also tend to make physical health problems worse or lead to later physical health problems.

Professor Richard Morriss, Centre Director commented, “The centre has already published world class research that has had an impact on service delivery locally and nationally. However it will enable less and more experienced researchers to work across many parts of the university, clinical services and with service users and members of the public to produce a greater number of more effective and more efficient interventions to help people manage their mood disorders and to help clinical staff to help them.”

Throughout the University of Nottingham there are widely dispersed research and education groups with an interest in mood disorders across many Faculties e.g. affective computing, sensor detection in engineering, self-harm in psychology as well as divisions of the medical school e.g. psychiatry and applied psychology, primary care and nursing.

Within Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, mood disorder research has led to a lot of multidisciplinary capacity building in research with many psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and nurses with higher degrees. There have also been important service developments from mood disorder research in the Trust such as the Specialist Depression Service for persistent moderate to severe depression, group psychoeducation for bipolar disorder and the Mental Capacity Act booklet.

There are also many active service users and members of the public who contribute to mood disorder research and such co-production has been key to developing acceptable and effective approaches to managing mood disorders in Nottingham.

The Centre for Mood Disorders plays a key part in the work that the National Institute for Healthcare Research (NIHR) funds in Nottingham:

  1. The Nottingham NIHR Biomedical Research Centre: mental health and digital technology theme
  2. The NIHR MindTech Health Technology Co-operative
  3. The NIHR Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care East Midlands (CLAHRC East Midlands)
  4. NIHR National School of Primary Care Research

The new Centre will join other specific Centres of Excellence hosted at the Institute covering areas such as health and criminal justice, translational neuroimaging, ADHD, advancing social interventions that promote mental health recovery and address inequalities, dementia and education.

Further information is available on the Institute of Mental Health website at



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