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Peter Mortimer

Researcher Peter Mortimer profile image

Preventing the side effects of breast cancer treatment

St George's, University of London
Cranmer Terrace
SW17 0RE
United Kingdom

About Peter Mortimer

Professor Peter Mortimer is based at St George’s Hospital Medical School in London, and is internationally renowned for his research and clinical expertise in the workings of the lymphatic system. He is uncovering the causes of arm swelling called lymphoedema, a common long-term side effect of treatment for breast cancer. His innovative research could lead to new and more effective ways to prevent or treat the problem, improving the quality of life for many breast cancer survivors in the future.

Arm swelling

Up to 1 in 4 people will develop lymphoedema after breast cancer treatments such as removal of lymph nodes or radiotherapy to the armpit, and the swelling can be painful and make arm movements difficult.

Professor Mortimer is leading a vital new study that will help reveal changes in the body that lead to lymphoedema. His team is recruiting breast cancer patients who are having surgery to remove their lymph nodes. The team will carry out several different tests on these patients, such as measuring how well their lymph nodes are working, and will monitor them for several years. The results will help guide improvements for preventing and treating this side effect in breast cancer survivors.

Skin cancer spread

Professor Mortimer is also looking at how the lymphatic system is involved in the spread of melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer. Gaining a detailed understanding of how this happens could lead to new drugs that can prevent cancer spread and improve survival for people with melanoma. 

Visit MyProjects to watch a video about Professor Mortimer's work on skin cancer.

Other research projects by Peter Mortimer

Science Committee Programme
Funding period: 01 January 2010 to 31 August 2014