A study looking at genes in cancer cells of the food pipe (oesophagus) and stomach

Cancer type:

Oesophageal cancer
Stomach cancer





This study is looking at a new way of testing the genes in cells of cancer of the food pipe (oesophagus) and stomach cancer.

Doctors can use chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery or a combination of these to treat oesophageal cancer and stomach cancer. The treatment the doctor chooses depends on the size of the cancer and how far it has grown. But doctors cannot tell who will respond to treatment. And they are always looking for ways to improve treatment.

Doctors now have a way of looking at a very large number of genes Open a glossary item in cancer cells. This is called ‘gene expression profiling’.

In this study, researchers will look at the genes in a large number of oesophageal and stomach cancers. The aim is to see if this will help them to work out who is most likely to benefit from certain treatments.

Please note you won’t get any direct benefit from taking part in this study but your taking part may help others in the future.

Who can enter

You can enter this study if

  • You have oesophageal cancer or stomach cancer
  • Your cancer can be removed with surgery

You cannot enter this study if you have another cancer.

Trial design

This study will recruit up to 400 people.

Before starting treatment you will have an endoscopy to assess your cancer. During the endoscopy the doctor will take a small piece of tissue (biopsy) from your cancer. The doctor will send part of this to the researchers. The researchers will look at the genes in the cancer cells.

You may have another endoscopy 12 weeks after starting treatment to assess your response to treatment. If you do, your doctor will take another biopsy and send it to the researchers.

If you are to have surgery to remove your cancer, the surgeon will take another biopsy of your cancer during the surgery and send it to the researchers to look at.

You will be asked to give some blood samples when you have your biopsy, surgery and if your treatment is changed. The researchers will use these to find out more about oesophageal cancer. You don't have to agree to give the blood samples, you can still take part in the study.

Hospital visits

There are no extra hospital visits if you take part in this study.

Side effects

There are no side effects to taking part in the study.

There are possible complications (which are rare) from the endoscopy and biopsy which will be discussed with you by the doctor performing the endoscopy.

You can find more information about an endoscopy on CancerHelp UK.



Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Prof David Cunningham

Supported by

The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:


Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Around 1 in 5 people take part in clinical trials

3 phases of trials

Around 1 in 5 people diagnosed with cancer in the UK take part in a clinical trial.

Last reviewed:

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