Clinical Fellows shortlisted for Royal Society of Medicine prize

Posted by ep256 at Apr 13, 2018 03:21 PM |
Nominated for the Sylvia Lawler prize in oncology

Two of our Clinical Fellows in the Leicester Cancer Research Centre, Mark Openshaw and Sam Khan, were shortlisted for the annual Royal Society of Medicine Sylvia Lawler prize in oncology.

The Leicester Cancer Research Centre is a partnership between the University of Leicester, the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and the Hope Cancer Research Charity.  The aim of the partnership is to ensure that we deliver the most cutting-edge research that we can for our local patient population.

On Wednesday 28 March, both Mark and Sam gave presentations on their areas of research, with Sam winning the overall scientific prize. You can read more about their areas of study below.


Dr Mark Openshaw is a Specialist Trainee in Medical Oncology.  He has been funded through a Hope Against Cancer Clinical Fellowship and is in the last year of his PhD.  His work is to develop the liquid biopsy technology to use in patients with oesophagogastric cancer.  We know this group of patients have poor outcomes and if we can use the liquid biopsy to identify patients who have minimal residual disease after surgery i.e. disease that is not detectable by the human eye, we can offer them further treatments to improve outcome.  We can also monitor patients more accurately with this technology.

Dr Sam Khan is also funded by Hope Against Cancer Clinical Fellowship.  She has also been one of our NIHR Academic Fellows.  Her work is to understand more clearly the potential mechanism of curcumin as a chemopreventive agent.  Therapeutic prevention is an area of unmet need as most research focus is on treating patients when they have their cancer.  What we wish to do with chemoprevention is identify patients either at risk of cancer or at the earliest stage so that we can intervene then to improve outcomes.  Specifically Sam has been working with a cellular factor called Nanog to understand whether this would be a potential future target to develop new chemotherapeutic agents.


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