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The research cycle

Research can sometimes seem like a long, straight line. We have a question about something, so we look it up, find answers and solve our problem.

But it isn’t quite that simple. Research is, in fact, a cycle. And it’s one we all play a part in.

The research cycle

To get an idea off the ground, researchers need evidence that shows a clear need to look into a specific question. This could come from prior research, or vital projects like the Rory Morrison WMUK Registry, which collects and analyses data.

Researchers use their idea and the evidence they’ve collected to put together a proposal. They send this proposal out to organisations that fund research, like charities and universities. Once they secure enough funding to carry out their project, they’ll get started.

Research projects take time to complete – often years. Once finished, the researchers will share their findings. These findings might be transformative, leading to the development of new drugs and therapies, or they might show that the researcher’s idea doesn’t work at all.

It’s important to remember, though, that there’s no such thing as a ‘failed’ research project. We don’t know if an idea will work or not until we try it. Finding out that an idea doesn’t work is a valuable learning, and means that other researchers know they need to look at different avenues.

All research projects breed new ideas, and the cycle starts again.

WMUK research cycle

How do you fit in?


Everyone in the WM community can play an active part in research:

  1. Join the Rory Morrison WMUK Registry. By sharing your data, you’ll be helping researchers improve their understanding of WM, prioritise their work, and give them research ideas that can transform the WM world.
    Find out more about joining the Registry. 

  2. Donate. We can’t fund research without money. By donating to WMUK, you’ll be funding the Rory Morrison WMUK Registry, growing this valuable research project. Donate today

  3. Take part in clinical trials. When it comes to treatment options, you may be eligible to join one of the clinical trials taking place in the UK. Clinical trials are a late phase in research that test new therapies on WM patients, helping scientists and clinicians understand how they work in the real world. Talk to your clinician about what is available, and learn more about clinical trials in our excellent webinar with Dr Jaimal Kothari.

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