case studies

Disease-specific research: Discovering cancers earlier

The research

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third highest cause of cancer death worldwide and is on the increase, especially in developed nations. In 2017, the UK alone registered 43,438 new cases and 16,300 deaths from CRC. Early detection is key to suppressing this trend by increasing the likelihood of successful treatment.

At the NHC, Dr Maria Angeles Juanes Ortiz is conducting significant research to help diagnose early stages of cancers and improve treatment success rates. Her work explores molecular coordination between cytoskeletal networks in collective cell migration and cell division, and its impact on development and disease.

The impact

Recognising the potential impact of Dr Juane’s research, in early 2021 she was awarded £99,469 in funding as winner of the highly competitive Association of Medical Sciences Springboard prize. This is enabling the development of a broad pre-clinical programme, collaborating with other academics, clinicians and industry.

The prime goal of this study is to discover specific genetic signatures and biomarkers to permit not only the early identification of patients at risk of a specific gut disorder, but also support doctors in clinical decision making, treatment selection and prediction of outcomes.”

Dr Maria Angeles Juanes Ortiz,

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