Research //

Cancer

Cancer is a major health concern to people around the world and a strong focus of the Maurice Wilkins Centre’s research.

Our investigators are carrying out research into how cancer cells function, identifying potential drug targets in the cancer cell, developing new anti-cancer drugs and looking at how the human body copes with some cancer drug treatments.

They have genuine “bench-to-bedside” capability, having led both the fundamental science developing new cancer drugs and diagnostics, and founding companies responsible for taking those discoveries into the clinic.

THE MAURICE WILKINS CENTRE UNDERTAKES RESEARCH IN THE FOLLOWING AREAS

Molecular approaches to cancer therapy

Most cancers are associated with mutations in the signalling proteins found in cells. A better understanding of the signalling pathways underlying many cancers is aiding progress in the development of novel molecular-targeted drug therapies.

Attacking tumour hypoxia and relieving immunosuppression in cancer

Tumours are typically hypoxic – devoid of oxygen – producing microenvironments that greatly reduce the ability of traditional cancer immunotherapies to work properly. However, researchers are working towards overcoming this barrier.

Harnessing the immune system to treat cancer

Immune therapy remains one of the most exciting areas in clinical cancer research. Maurice Wilkins Centre investigators have discovered several immune modulating drugs and vaccines that are now undergoing preclinical development.

Genomic approaches to cancer diagnosis and treatment

As cancer therapy increasingly involves immune approaches, genomic techniques are being applied to the analysis of immune responses to cancer as well as cancer cells themselves. 

RECENT HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR CANCER RESEARCH PROGRAMME