“I think it’s really important that people keep signing up to these type of trials to push research forward.”
A study looking at a new test to find cell changes for people with Barrett’s oesophagus (ACE-B)
Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.
More about this trial
- autofluorescence imaging (AFI)
- probe based Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy (pCLE)
Who can enter
- have Barrett’s cells that form at least a 2cm band around the inside of your oesophagus or have a patch of Barrett’s cells at least 3cm long
- have a referral from your GP or another doctor for an endoscopy in hospital
- are at least 18 years old
- have inflammation of your food pipe (oesophagitis), grade B, C or D – your doctor can tell you if this applies to you
- have had surgery to remove part of your oesophagus
- have an abnormal condition of your oesophagus such as a narrowing that makes swallowing difficult – you can check this with your doctor
- have had cancer in the cells of the lining of the oesophagus (oesophageal adenocarcinoma)
- have had abnormal tissue growth related to your Barrett’s oesophagus which has been seen on an endoscopy
- are allergic to the drug fluorescein (this is a yellow dye you may have put in your eye during a sight test)
- have asthma that is severe or difficult to control
- have a problem with how your blood clots, or you are taking tablets to prevent abnormal clotting, for example warfarin or clopidogrel, which cannot be safely stopped (talk to your doctor about this)
- have severe disease affecting your heart or lungs
- have liver disease
- have a pacemaker or other electric device in your chest
- the standard endoscopy
- the new test
Having the standard endoscopy
Your doctor looks at your oesophagus, stomach and part of your bowel (duodenum) using an endoscope.
Your doctor or nurse will spray the back of your throat to numb it and make it easier to swallow the tube. You then lie on your side.
It takes a few minutes for your throat to go numb. Then the endoscopist passes the endoscope tube into your mouth and down your throat to the oesophagus. The tube is slightly bigger than a pen and will be uncomfortable but shouldn’t be painful.
You can usually have the test while you're awake but you can choose to have a medicine to make you drowsy (a sedative).
You have biopsy samples taken of any abnormal areas and 4 random biopsies taken every 2cm. This aims to find any tissue changes at an early stage.
Having the AFI and pCLE endoscopy
This is a similar procedure to having the standard endoscopy. But the test also uses autofluorescence imaging (AFI) and pCLE.
You have a drug called fluorescein as an injection into a vein. Fluorescein helps tiny structures show up clearly under the pCLE microscope. The endoscopist passes the pCLE microscope down the endoscope and looks again for cell changes.
You have biopsies taken from areas that look abnormal. Your endoscopist uses the AFI pictures to do this. Usually it’s about 4 or 5 biopsies, or up to 8 at the most.
Your biopsy samples are looked at in a laboratory. Scientists look for certain proteins, which could show how your Barrett’s oesophagus is progressing. This is called biomarker analysis.
You are asked to give permission for the biopsy samples to be stored and used for future research. You don’t have to agree to this if you don’t want to, you still have the tests in the same way.
The team asks you to complete 2 short questionnaires before and after each endoscopy. This is to find out about your feelings of anxiety or discomfort about the procedure.
This can help the researchers compare the two tests based on how people feel about having the test.
- your height
- your weight
- around your waist and hips
- tearing the oesophagus lining
- bleeding from the biopsy site
- feeling or being sick
- temporary yellowish colour of your skin and eyes - this should go within a few hours
- allergic reaction (skin rash and itching)
How to join a clinical trial
Dr Massimiliano di Pietro
Cancer Research UK
Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre
University of Cambridge
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute