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Here at the Royal Liverpool Hospital we are dedicated to improving health outcomes through research. Our Liver Unit delivers a wide range of studies.

Research and Innovation

ASEPTIC (Primary Antibiotic to prevent SpontanEous bacterial PeritoniTIs in Cirrhosis)

We want to find out if the drug co-trimoxazole is effective at preventing spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) infections for patients with liver disease.

432 patients will be recruited to this trial across approximately 30 NHS hospitals centres in the UK.

If you are suitable to take part, you will be selected at random to receive either co-trimoxazole OR placebo (both drugs are capsule pills).

MBOP (Mechanism of Betablockade On bacterial translocation in Portal hypertension)

We want to find out if a widely prescribed beta blocker medication influences gut bacteria in patients with cirrhotic liver disease and if this is part of the clinical effect.

We will meet with you at your usual BOPPP appointment.

We would like you to provide blood, saliva and stool samples

There is one additional ultra sound test on your spleen (KCH only).

Your participation could help future medical treatment in this condition.

BOPPP - Beta-blockers Or Placebo for Primary Prophylaxis of oesophageal varices.

We want to find out if a widely prescribed beta blocker medication will help prevent bleeding of small blood vessels (or varices) in patients with cirrhotic liver disease.

Participants will be given either a beta-blocker medication or a dummy drug (‘placebo’) for 3-years.

We would meet with you every 6 months in line to your routine NHS appointments.

There are no additional tests other than those you will have as routine clinical care.

Your participation could help future medical treatment in this condition.

CALIBRE - Carvedilol versus variceal band ligation in primary prevention of variceal bleeding in liver cirrhosis

Variceal bleeding is a serious complication of liver cirrhosis.

Patients with liver cirrhosis and medium to large oesophageal varices need treatment with medicines known as beta-blockers or endoscopic treatment with variceal banding to lower the risk of variceal bleeding.

We do not know which treatment is better and this trial is being conducted to find this out.

This study will randomly assign participants to either carvedilol or variceal banding.

Our aim is to improve the care of patients with liver cirrhosis and oesophageal varices.

MICAH - Multicentre Cohort Study in Alcoholic Hepatitis

The purpose of this study is to investigate how we can reduce mortality in patients with alcoholic hepatitis.

We will be collecting samples and data from you. These samples and data will be used to investigate whether a blood test can diagnose AH and so avoid the need for liver biopsy.

It will also study tests to predict disease outcome, infection and kidney damage.

It will also explore patients’ experiences of AH to understand what is important to you and to identity potential barriers and facilitators to accessing treatment.

PSC UK - Research study to determine the genetic causes of Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis

We do not know what causes PSC. However, there is evidence that genetic factors are important. By studying DNA obtained from people with PSC, we hope to achieve a better understanding of how genetic factors contribute to this disease.


Only half of the genes for rare diseases are currently known. Discovering genes causing rare diseases is the start of a new journey. Accurate tests for rare diseases can be developed to obtain more rapid diagnosis. Once the gene causing a rare disease has been identified, the search for effective treatments can start.

TACE 3 - : A two-arm multi-stage (TAMS) seamless phase II/III randomised trial of nivolumab in combination with TACE/TAE for patients with intermediate stage HCC

When we do not know which way of treating patients is best, we need to compare different treatments.  Everyone that agrees to take part in this study will be put into one of the two treatment groups.

The treatment group for each patient is chosen by a process called randomisation. It is decided by a computer and you have an equal chance of being put into either of the two treatment groups below:


Group 1: TransArterial (Chemo)Embolisation (TACE) and/or TransArterial Embolisation (TAE) ALONE


Group 2: TransArterial ChemoEmbolisation (TACE) and/or TransArterial Embolisation (TAE) + Nivolumab


Once your treatment has been randomly decided, you will be advised which treatment you will have.