Research highlights

Reducing chemotherapy side-effects

Anti-cancer therapies that damage DNA may enhance the risk of patients developing another cancer later in life. Dr Mark Miles and Dr Christine Hawkins, with funding from The Kids' Cancer Project, have identified a class of drugs that kill cancer without causing further tumours. Read more.

Understanding the genetic causes of cancer

Cancer involves the interaction of several gene mutations. Activating mutations in the Ras gene drive many human cancers, but Ras alone is not sufficient to form malignant cancers. Professor Patrick Humbert, Dr Helena Richardson and colleagues have discovered new genes that cooperate with the Ras gene in cancer development. Their findings, published in PLoS Genetics, may lead to advances in the understanding and treatment of human cancers.

Identifying new therapeutic targets

DNA mutations caused by the mis-repair of double-strand breaks are a major cause of cancer and neurodegeneration. Dr Donna Whelan and collaborators have used single molecule super-resolution microscopy to visualize this process, identifying new therapeutic targets for BRCA1/2 cancers. Find out more.

Understanding cancer development

Abnormal tissue growth can lead to cancer. Dr Helena Richardson, Dr Marta Portela and Dr Xia Li, together with colleagues from the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and the University of Massachusetts, have discovered how the lethal-giant larvae gene regulates tissue communication, growth and structure. Their findings, published in Science Signaling, may lead to new treatment options for cancer.