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Funding and Impact - Cancer

The Cancer theme supports early phase cancer research by investing in dedicated facilities as well as unparalleled expertise; expediting the development of new therapies that are easily translated into the clinical setting.

Funding Schemes

The cancer theme currently funds 60 Programmed Activities, which accrue service support costs along with 6 Whole Time Equivalents and £176k on project specific awards. These costs are in the region of £1.7 million.

Impacts of awards on healthcare

Dr Rakesh Popat’s team was the first world-wide to treat patients in two separate first-in-human Phase 1 haematology trials. These were trials investigating the safety of different monoclonal antibodies in treating patients with multiple myeloma and AML.  Consequently, this has led to UCL/H being the only UK site selected to open a Phase 1 trial of a new dual PI3K/ mTOR inhibitor for patients with relapsed lymphoma. Read more

Professor Steve Halligan and colleagues compared computed tomographic colonography (CTC) with barium enema examination and colonoscopy; clinical examinations carried out in patients with symptoms suggestive of bowel cancer. Results from this work have contributed to a change in the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme, which immediately discontinued barium enema and replaced it with CTC as the preferred method for radiological examination. Read more

Professor Tim Meyer and his team are pioneering research into circulating tumour cells (CTCs). The team are using state of the art technology to isolate CTCs which are very rare in comparison to blood cells. The ability to understand how tumours evolve at the single cell level in response to therapy may help to guide treatment decisions in the future and improve outcomes for cancer patients. Read more

Dr Karl Peggs and colleagues revolutionised treatment for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma not responding to conventional dose therapy. A treatment strategy with high dose chemotherapy using the ‘BEAM’ regimen, followed by autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) was developed. Further research brought about a combined treatment approach of lymphocytic infusions and positron emission tomography (PET) scanning. This combined approach delivered results that were significantly better than those seen in other countries, and has become standard practice throughout the UK. Read more