Usher Institute

Grant to speed up bowel cancer diagnosis

Scientists from the University of Edinburgh and University of Leicester have been awarded a grant of almost £25,000 from Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer to investigate whether it’s possible to find DNA from cancer cells in poo samples.

If successful, this technique could be used in the future to improve the current bowel cancer screening programme and speed up the diagnosis of the disease for patients with symptoms.  

This award is part of Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer’s investment of almost £450,000 to support research with the greatest benefits for those at risk and affected by the disease. This research supports the charity’s vision that by 2050 no one will die from bowel cancer.

The disease is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK. However, it shouldn’t be because it is treatable and curable especially if diagnosed early.

One of best ways to tackle cancer will be to detect it earlier, and identify who is at risk so that they can take preventative measures. Using what we learn from our research, we hope we can work with policymakers to help improve the bowel cancer screening programme.

Dr Evropi Theodoratou

We are delighted to invest in Drs Theodoratou and Rufini’s research. Their important work will support our commitment to invest in high quality, innovative and creative solutions to help lead a step change in the number of people surviving bowel cancer.“We’ve been at the forefront of campaigning for improvements for earlier diagnosis.  Whilst there have been  important steps forward,  there are still many unanswered research questions, which if addressed could help accelerate our progress further and ultimately save more lives.  Through strategic investment in targeted research, we aim to drive positive change for patients and help to deliver improvements in bowel cancer survival in our lifetime.”

Deborah Alsina MBEChief Executive of Bowel Cancer UK

Related links

Bowel Cancer UK Research Grants

Press Release on University of Leicester website

Other work from Dr Evropi Theodoratou: The Lothian Bowel Symptoms Study