Last year in the UK over 60,000 cancer patients enrolled on clinical trials aimed at improving cancer treatments and making them available to all.
A study looking at how to test the genes in lung cancer cells (Stratified Medicine Programme Two - SMP2)
This study is looking at how to test for changes in the genes of lung cancer cells. It is part of the Cancer Research UK Stratified Medicine Programme.
Currently doctors decide on how to treat a cancer by looking at
- What type of cancer it is
- Where it is in your body
- The size of cancer
- What the cancer cells look like
We know that this works for many people but not for all. This could be because there are slight differences in the cancer cells from person to person even if they have the same type of cancer. So researchers have been looking in detail at the differences between cancer cells. They've found that some cancer cells have particular proteins in the cell and others don’t. Or sometimes cancer cells have far more of a particular protein than healthy cells. These differences between cells are caused by changes to the genes in the cancer cells.
Researchers want to look at a way to test for these genetic changes. They hope that in the future doctors may be better able to match treatment to the changes in the genes of cancer cells. This is called stratified medicine.
To do this, the researchers need to collect samples of cancer tissue from a large number of people and test them for genetic changes. And to gather information about what treatment they have and what happens to them.
The researchers also want to find out what the costs are to do this and how best it can be used as a part of routine care in the future.
Who can enter
This part of the study will recruit up to 4,000 people from around the UK.
The research team will ask for a small piece of tissue taken when you have surgery. If you are not having surgery they can take a sample of tissue removed when you had a
They will compare the genes of the cancer cells to the genes of your blood cells. This is to find out what changes there are in the cells of the cancer tissue.
They will also ask your permission to look at your medical notes and other health related records to find out about
- Your cancer
- Other illness you may have
- Your treatment now and in the future
There are no extra hospital visits if you take part in this study.
You may have some slight bruising or bleeding from where the researchers take the blood sample.
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.
Professor Peter Johnson
Cancer Research UK
Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer