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About Us

Our Mission

Our mission is to shorten the time taken to identify safe, effective and affordable treatments for COVID-19.

Our Vision

AGILE will be the key link in the chain of accelerated drug development, evaluating potential candidate treatments for COVID-19 and advancing only the compounds most likely to be effective into large-scale clinical trials.

The AGILE Clinical Team

AGILE is a collaboration between the University of Liverpool, the University of Southampton Research Unit, and other external partners. The team includes Infectious Diseases clinicians, clinical and pre-clinical pharmacologists, clinical trials specialists and statisticians, each bringing a unique set of skills and expertise to design the best platform possible.

Saye Khoo

Saye Khoo is Professor of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the University of Liverpool and Honorary Consultant Physician in Infectious Disease at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. He leads a research programme in antiviral therapy and is Chief Investigator for the international DolPHIN consortium and for AGILE.

David Lalloo

David Lalloo is Director and Professor of Tropical Medicine at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. He has worked with the MLW Programme in Malawi for almost twenty years and holds an appointment as an Honorary Consultant at the Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and remains clinically active.

Gareth Griffiths

Gareth Griffiths is the Director of the UKCRC registered Southampton Clinical Trials Unit (SCTU) and Professor of Clinical Trials based at the University of Southampton.

Sir Michael Jacobs

Michael Jacobs is Clinical Director of Infection at the Royal Free Hospital in London. He worked at the centre of the UK response to the West Africa Ebola outbreak, and serves on several national and international Ebola advisory committees. He was NHS England Programme Director for High Consequence Infectious Diseases.

Andrew Owen

Andrew Owen is Professor of Pharmacology and Director of the Centre of Excellence in Long-acting Therapeutics (CELT) at the University of Liverpool. He is Chair of the British Society for Nanomedicine, a fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, a fellow of the British Pharmacological Society, and a fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.

Richard FitzGerald

Richard FitzGerald is Director of the NIHR Clinical Research Facility and a Consultant Physician in Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics / General Medicine at the Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Tom Fletcher

Tom Fletcher is Senior Clinical Lecturer at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and a Defence Consultant in Infectious Diseases. He specialises in high consequence infectious diseases and is a long-term Consultant to the HQ WHO Clinical Team.

Lauren Walker

Lauren Walker is NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Honorary Consultant Physician in Clinical Pharmacology and Associate Director of the NIHR Clinical Research Facility at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Thomas Jaki

Thomas Jaki is Professor of Statistics at Lancaster University and Programme Leader at the MRC Biostatistics Unit at the University of Cambridge. His work focuses on efficient trials using adaptive and Bayesian methods.

Helen Reynolds

Helen Reynolds is a Programme Manager in Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the University of Liverpool and Honorary Clinical Research Nurse at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. She is a programme manager for the clinical trials in Prof. Saye Khoo’s antiviral research group that include the international DolPHIN consortium and AGILE.

Ellice Marwood

Ellice Marwood is a Senior Trial Manager, Portfolio Lead at the UKCRC registered Southampton Clinical Trials Unit (SCTU), University of Southampton. She has expertise in clinical trial management and regulatory processes. She manages a team of staff at SCTU responsible for the coordination of a portfolio of clinical trials, including the AGILE trial.

Susannah Condie

Susannah Condie is Head of Clinical Data Management at Southampton Clinical Trials Unit (SCTU), University of Southampton. She is a clinical operations professional with 30 years’ experience, across both academia and pharmaceutical research development, specialising in clinical data management and digital technology. Susannah has led the digital transformation at SCTU, including the implementation of Software as a Service (SaaS) and Medidata Rave EDC, integrated randomisation RTSM and eConsent.

Our Ethos

As citizens and as academic researchers, we seek new and effective treatments for COVID-19 as quickly as possible, made readily available to all who need it. We recognise the importance of generating research data which are robust, reproducible, timely, of high quality and used for public good.

We will apply the following considerations which reflect our core values (and those of our funders) and the public nature of our core funding:

  1. Patient benefit is our utmost priority and everything we do is for the ultimate benefit of patients.
  2. We will not compromise on quality as we create the evidence for better therapeutics quickly.
  3. We do not seek to make any financial profit from the AGILE platform. Our costs are calculated using published UK HEI (academic) and NIHR models.
  4. AGILE is designed as an open resource. Our Master Protocol, and associated templates for candidate-specific trial arms are published, and freely available for use by other researchers (at their own risk).
  5. The AGILE Sponsor retains the rights to all data generated from our clinical research activity. This is important for the purposes of Research and Education, but also for sharing data across arms (as is the purpose of any platform trial), for depositing anonymised data in large shared repositories, and for use by other researchers.
  6. Collaboration to find promising drug candidates is the lifeblood of our Programme. We actively seek discussions with the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry, with other academic researchers, public consortia and global healthcare stakeholders.
  7. We believe that public-private collaborative partnerships can be a win-win for all, and fully support the need for industry to develop commercially viable products. We also believe that COVID-19 poses one of the greatest global humanitarian threats in our lifetime; there is both a humanitarian and an ethical imperative to make effective treatments available to all, and especially to ensure equitable and affordable access for low- and middle-income countries.
  8. We take our candidate prioritisation process seriously. Our independent Scientific Advisory Board oversees this process, which takes into account the strength and quality of supporting evidence as well as our capacity to undertake any trial. We may also not pursue candidates which do not meet our criteria for scalable, and affordable access. It is never our intention to stop any potential medicine from undergoing investigation and we seek only to prioritise our limited resources to opportunities that stand the best chance of success.