A study of growth hormone levels and responses to chemotherapy

Please note - this trial is no longer recruiting patients. We hope to add results when they are available.

Cancer type:

Bowel (colorectal) cancer
Lung cancer
Non small cell lung cancer
Oesophageal cancer





This study is looking at levels of growth hormones in the blood before and after chemotherapy. It is for people who have bowel cancernon small cell lung cancer or cancer at the junction of your food pipe and stomach ( gastro oesophageal  cancer).

Doctors are now looking for people with bowel cancer to take part.

More about this trial

Doctors often use chemotherapy to treat cancer. It may help to control cancer symptoms and can help people to live longer. But over a period of time, the drugs may stop working. This is described as the cancer becoming resistant Open a glossary item to the drugs. Drug resistance means that chemotherapy helps some people more than others. It would help doctors to know in advance of giving the treatment who is most likely to benefit from chemotherapy.

One thing that may affect how well chemotherapy works is the level of growth hormones in the blood. Growth hormones are proteins that send signals to cells telling them to grow.

In this study, the researchers want to find out:

  • if they can measure changes in the levels of growth hormones in the blood of people having chemotherapy
  • whether different growth hormone levels affect how well chemotherapy works

Who can enter

You can enter this trial if you:

You cannot enter this trial if you:

  • have had radiotherapy, surgery (apart from a biopsy Open a glossary item), or an experimental drug in the last month
  • can’t have standard Open a glossary item chemotherapy
  • are taking part in another clinical trial looking at an experimental treatment
  • have any other condition which the study doctors think could affect you taking part

Trial design

Everybody taking part in this study has chemotherapy. The treatment you have will depend on the type of cancer you have, but you will have standard treatment Open a glossary item for your cancer type and stage. Taking part in the study does not change your treatment in any way.

Doctors are currently looking for people with bowel cancer. They hope that around 40 people will take part. Everyone has 3 blood tests on the first day of their chemotherapy. They have the tests:

  • before starting chemotherapy
  • about 2 hours after starting the treatment
  • and about 4 hours after starting treatment

They will also have blood tests 2 weeks later if they are at the hospital for a routine visit on that day. The researchers hope this will help them work out the best time to measure an increase in growth hormone levels.

If there is a sample of cancer tissue available from when you had surgery or a biopsy Open a glossary item, the study team will also measure the levels of growth hormones in this tissue.

Hospital visits

Taking part in this study will not involve any extra hospital visits. Your doctor will be able to explain how often you need to go to hospital to have chemotherapy and any other tests or scans.

Side effects

You may have a small bruise where you give extra blood samples.

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

Dr S. Van Schaeybroeck

Supported by

Belfast Health & Social Care Trust
Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC)
Queen's University

If you have questions about the trial please contact our cancer 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.

Last reviewed:

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