Current research projects
We are already partnering with a number of leading clinicians, institutions and academics across the UK. Read about some of our current research projects below.
We will look to continue this work by submitting new bids and working with the research community on new projects to ensure we have the greatest possible impact for those affected by bowel cancer.
To find out about our ground breaking 'critical gaps in bowel cancer research' project click here.
Understanding bowel cancer in younger people
We championed the creation of and gained funding for a cutting edge research project led by two of the UK’s leading academic GPs, Willie Hamilton, Professor of Primary Care Diagnostics at the University of Exeter Medical School and Greg Rubin, Professor of General Practice and Primary Care at Durham University, to speed up the diagnosis of younger bowel cancer patients as part of our successful Never Too Young campaign.
The research project is currently reviewing the presenting symptoms of people under 50 with bowel cancer or a bowel disease in order to develop a risk assessment tool. This will be used by GPs to determine who should be referred through for a diagnostic test, as this group frequently experiences delays. It will present in summer 2016.
Unraveling the genes behind bowel cancer
We are on the Steering Group of the Genomics England Clinical Interpretation Partnership (GeCIP) for bowel cancer with a particular focus on communication and patient and public engagement.
The GeCIP includes researchers and clinicians working together to analyse data from the 100,000 Genomes Project. The aim is to help us better interpret genomic data, which will lead to better clinical understanding and better patient outcomes.
The 100,000 Genomes Project will sequence 100,000 genomes from around 70,000 people. Participants are NHS patients with a rare disease, plus their families, and patients with cancer. The aim is to create a new genomic medicine service for the NHS – transforming the way people are cared for. In time, there is the potential for new and more effective treatments. The project will also enable new medical research as researchers study how best to use genomics in healthcare and how best to interpret the data to help patients. The causes, diagnosis and treatment of disease will also be investigated. This is currently the largest national sequencing project of its kind in the world.
The GeCIP will analyse information from the 100,000 Genomes Project to improve diagnosis and treatment of bowel cancer. As well as ourselves, the bowel cancer Steering Group includes five of our Medical Advisory Board: Dr Tim Iveson, Professor Dion Morton, Professor Ian Tomlinson, Professor Richard Wilson and Professor Sir John Burn.
Personalising bowel cancer treatment
We are a partner of the Stratification in COloRecTal cancer or S-CORT Consortium to help personalise bowel cancer treatment by matching patients to the most effective therapies.
S-CORT will use the latest genome-based technology to uncover the complex biology of bowel cancer in samples collected from over 2,000 patients from large clinical trials. Researchers will use this information to precisely match the right treatment to the right patient and better predict how different patients respond to treatment, allowing the most effective therapies to be delivered to newly-diagnosed bowel cancer patients.
We have partnerships in place with the leading global colorectal cancer charities and our policy campaigns are being emulated across the world. For example, our Never Too Young campaign, which aims to improve the diagnosis, treatment and care of younger bowel cancer patients, has already been replicated in the USA and Australia and is now being adopted in Canada and other parts of Europe. We are already working closely with Colon Cancer Alliance in the USA, Bowel Cancer Australia and Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada on the campaign and plan to commission and share research in this area.
We have close relationships with leading scientists and clinicians from other countries which is important as it opens up opportunities for learning and international collaboration on research.