Dundee University is to lead a £26m trial into the safety of arthritis medication.
Arthritis can cause stiff and painful joints
The research will compare traditional anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, with a newer one called celecoxib.
The academics will study the long term effects of the different types of treatment.
About 9 million people in the UK suffer from arthritis, which can make joints stiff and painful.
The Universities of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen will also be partners in the SCOT trial (Standard Care versus Celecoxib Outcome Trial).
Four hundred GP practices and 16,000 patients will participate in the three-year trial.
Tom MacDonald, professor of clinical pharmacology at the University of Dundee, said: "This trial is of international significance because it will compare the various NSAID [non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs] treatments prescribed for arthritis sufferers in usual care.
"There has been a long running debate as to the most effective pain relief with fewest side effects.
"This study will help us draw some solid conclusions to benefit arthritis sufferers."