CRUK Preventing cancer – Fund vital research to find cancer genes

Why this research is needed and the impact of our work

Cancer Research UK Beijing Biddies Challenge

Every year, more people die from cancer in the UK than any other disease, and more than 1 in 3 of us will develop cancer at some point in our lives. Cancer rates are rising – but we can do something about it. Research by charities such as Cancer Research UK is the key to beating cancer and creating more tomorrows for more people. Thanks to research, we know more about cancer and how to treat it than ever before. You are twice as likely to survive cancer today than 40 years ago, and it’s our doctors, scientists and nurses that have been at the heart of this progress. None of this would be possible without help from people like you so we can continue our life-saving work.

What research are we doing to beat cancer?

We are at a tipping point in scientific research and see the disease in a new light. Advances in the ability to analyse DNA mean that scientists are working to catalogue the genetic faults that drive cancer. Professor Tim Bishop at the University of Leeds is studying the genes involved in several types of cancer to help doctors develop personalised cancer prevention advice.

His team are comparing the DNA of people with cancer with that of healthy people, to see the difference in genes. Through these pioneering studies, the researchers hope to identify genes that increase the risk of melanoma skin cancer, as well as bowel and testicular cancers.

As cancer risk can be affected by lifestyle choices (such as diet) the team’s research focuses on how particular combinations of genes and lifestyle influence a person’s overall cancer risk.

Thousands of lives could be saved every year through earlier detection and diagnosis, so if we can identify who might be at risk of developing cancer, we could make a huge leap forward in fighting the disease. Professor Bishop’s team is also developing more advanced techniques to analyse the valuable data generated from this work. This will help them and others to pin down cancer genes faster and more accurately.

The difference you can make

We’ve made great progress in the fight against cancer but there is still a long way to go. Today alone, more than 850 people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer and of these, sadly, half will not survive. Each year our scientists get closer to finding cures for more cancers. With the continued help of our supporters we can accelerate our progress in the fight against this devastating disease.

Sooner or later we will cure all cancers. Please help us make it sooner by donating today.