General News

CRUK Gibraltar Committee visit the BCI

Posted in General News, Engagement Published by Bethan Warman 18 July 2018

CRUK Gibraltar Committee visit the BCI

We were recently visited by two members of the CRUK Gibraltar Committee, Giovi and Deborah, who came to the BCI for a laboratory tour with Dr Ana Rio-Machin, a postdoctoral researcher in the Centre for Haemato-Oncology. Ana’s research focuses on leukaemia, a type of blood cancer in which patients present an abnormal growth of white blood cells.

Following an introduction to the work that is conducted here to help better understand and treat leukaemia, provided by Ana’s supervisor, Prof Jude Fitzgibbon, Giovi and Deborah visited the laboratories to see where this research takes place.

Uncovering the evolutionary history of IBD-associated colorectal cancer

Posted in General News, Publications Published by Bethan Warman 11 July 2018

Uncovering the evolutionary history of IBD-associated colorectal cancer

A team of researchers from the BCI, led by Prof Trevor Graham, Lead of the Evolution and Cancer Biology Laboratory, have reported the genetic events involved in the early development of bowel cancer in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Such knowledge may be able to be exploited to design simple diagnostic tests to stratify patients with IBD at high risk of developing cancer.

IBD more than doubles an individual’s lifetime risk of developing bowel cancer, and the risk increases significantly if they have suffered with IBD for a sustained period of time. With this in mind, the study published today in Gut- performed in collaboration with researchers from St Mark’s Hospital, led by Prof Ailsa Hart, and the University of Oxford, led by Prof Simon Leedham- set out to understand the genetics of how CRC develops in people with IBD.

Prof Trevor Graham part of ‘ACE’ research centre within NCI’s Cancer Systems Biology Consortium

Posted in General News, Grants & Awards Published by Bethan Warman 19 June 2018

Prof Trevor Graham part of ‘ACE’ research centre within NCI’s Cancer Systems Biology Consortium

BCI’s Prof Trevor Graham, Lead of the Evolution and Cancer Biology Laboratory, is part of Arizona State University’s recently funded research centre called ‘ACE’ (the Arizona Cancer Evolution Centre), which has been awarded more than $8.5 million over five years to serve as one of 13 research hubs within the National Cancer Institute (NCI)’s Cancer Systems Biology Consortium (CSBC).

NCI’s CSBC has a multidisciplinary approach, with the network of centres uniting clinical and basic cancer researchers with physical scientists, engineers, mathematicians and computer scientists to tackle key questions in cancer biology in novel ways.

BCI at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting: Results from the PAKT and ABACUS trials

Posted in General News, Conferences, BCI on the Road Published by Bethan Warman 15 June 2018

BCI at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting: Results from the PAKT and ABACUS trials

Professors Peter Schmid and Thomas Powles attended this year’s ASCO Annual Meeting, which took place from 1st-5th June in Chicago. The Centre Lead of our Centre for Experimental Cancer Medicine (CECM), Prof Schmid, presented data from the PAKT trial- a trial investigating the addition of a novel drug called AZD5363 to a standard chemotherapy regimen as a treatment for triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). Prof Powles of the CECM and Director of the Barts Cancer Centre, presented results from the ABACUS trial, which is investigating the efficacy and safety of a drug called atezolizumab administered prior to cystectomy in muscle invasive bladder cancer. The ABACUS trial was selected as one of the highlights of this year’s meeting.

Research explainer: Mis-segregation of human chromosomes

Posted in General News, Publications Published by Bethan Warman 13 June 2018

Research explainer: Mis-segregation of human chromosomes

Dr Sarah McClelland from Barts Cancer Institute, Queen Mary University of London, has recently published new research in the journal Cell Reports revealing new insights into why cell division can sometimes go wrong.

In this Q & A, she explains why chromosomes can end up in the wrong places when dividing and highlights two particular chromosomes that seem to be more prone to the issue than others.

Research suggests improved detection rates are needed to maximise cancer prevention

Posted in General News, Publications Published by Bethan Warman 08 June 2018

Research suggests improved detection rates are needed to maximise cancer prevention

Current detection strategies are found to have identified only 2.6% of the BRCA gene mutation carriers in the Greater London population, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Medical genetics. The findings of the study, performed by researchers from the BCI’s Centre for Experimental Cancer Medicine, led by Dr Ranjit Manchanda, suggest that enhanced and new approaches are required to maximise the opportunity for breast and ovarian cancer prevention.

BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations are associated with an increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. A recent study has shown that about 72 and 69% of women who inherit a harmful mutation in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, respectively, develop breast cancer by 80 years of age. Additionally, 44 and 17% of women who inherit a harmful mutation in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, respectively, develop ovarian cancer by 80 years of age. Identifying mutation carriers is therefore critical to reduce the number of BRCA-associated cancers.

Forecasting the evolution of cancer

Posted in General News, Publications Published by Bethan Warman 28 May 2018

Predicting the trajectory of tumour growth

Forecasting the evolution of cancer

New research, published today in Nature Genetics, has developed a computer model that forecasts the changes that occur within tumours as they develop. In the future, it is hoped that such a model may enable the prediction of the trajectory of tumour growth in patients, allowing clinicians to pre-empt disease course and tailor treatment regimens accordingly.

The model was developed in collaboration with researchers from BCI’s Centre for Tumour Biology, led by Prof Trevor Graham (Lead for the Evolutionary and Cancer Biology Laboratory), the Institute of Cancer Research, led by Dr Andrea Sottoriva, and University College London, led by Dr Chris Barnes.

International Clinical Trials Day 2018

Posted in General News Published by Bethan Warman 21 May 2018

International Clinical Trials Day 2018

International Clinical Trials Day is celebrated on 20th May each year in recognition of the clinical trials conducted around the world, which ensure that research from the laboratory can be translated into patient benefit. The progress that is continuing to be made in cancer research, resulting in cancer survival rates doubling in the last 40 years, would not be possible without the researchers, clinicians, nurses and, of course, patients that are involved in clinical trials each year.

Fellows inaugurated at new Rutherford Academy of Population Genomics and Health Data Science

Posted in General News, Grants & Awards Published by Bethan Warman 16 May 2018

Fellows inaugurated at new Rutherford Academy of Population Genomics and Health Data Science

Queen Mary University of London has appointed four research fellows to its new Rutherford Academy of Population Genomics and Health Data Science, funded by the Medical Research Council and UK Research and Innovation’s Rutherford Fund. Two of the fellows include BCI’s Dr Kit Curtius and Dr Dayem Ullah.

Queen Mary’s new Rutherford Academy will be aligned to its research as a partner of the London substantive site of Health Data Research UK - a major new initiative to transform health through data science. Forty two of these prestigious fellowships were awarded following a rigorous national competition, resulting in four fellowships at Queen Mary out of a total of fourteen awarded to London universities.

London Pancreas Workshop 2018

Posted in General News, BCI Spotlight Articles, Events Published by Bethan Warman 11 May 2018

A forum for state-of-the-art clinical and basic research in pancreatic cancer

London Pancreas Workshop 2018

On Friday 4th May, BCI hosted the seventh London Pancreas Workshop, co-organised by Prof Hemant Kocher and our Director Prof Nick Lemoine, which attracted delegates from across Europe and America, with over 140 attendees in total. The biennial event is recognised as a forum for state-of-the-art clinical and basic research in pancreatic cancer.

The areas of focus for this year’s workshop were diagnostics, clinical trials and preclinical work for targeting pancreatic cancer. We heard a variety of interesting talks in these areas, delivered by researchers renowned in their fields.

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