Research into gallbladder cancer

Tests of treatments on patients are called clinical trials. Cancer Research UK supports many UK and international clinical trials. The video shows what it is like to take part in a trial.

Reducing side effects of treatment

A trial is looking at whether acupuncture can reduce the nerve damage that chemotherapy treatment can cause for some people.

Researchers are also looking into the side effects of chemotherapy that affects the tummy (stomach) and bowels.


Research is continuing into chemotherapy drugs and combinations of chemotherapy drugs to treat gallbladder cancer. Researchers are looking into:

  • using chemotherapy to stop, or slow down, the cancer coming back after surgery
  • controlling the symptoms of advanced gallbladder cancer
  • comparing chemotherapy drugs

Research into cancer treatment

Doctors treat cancer that has spread with a biological therapy, or chemotherapy or both. But sometimes the treatment stops working and the cancer no longer responds to it. This means the cancer has become resistant to the treatment. 

Researchers want to understand why cancer becomes resistant to treatment and how to predict when this might happen.

Diagnosing gallbladder cancer

Doctors use blood tests, scans and biopsies to diagnose gallbladder cancer. Researchers hope a test that looks for a protein called Mcm5 will be better at diagnosing gallbladder cancers. Mcm stands for ‘minichromosome maintenance’ protein. This is a new test.

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