Acquisition of patient samples is key to translational research and we have developed an extensive biobanking infrastructure with a flexible approach to allow collection at all points of the treatment pathway.
A personalised medicine strategy requires routine molecular analysis of tumour samples and circulating biomarkers from the very beginning of the patient journey to determine the optimal combination of therapies for treatment. A key challenge is the acquisition of repeat tumour biopsies for most cancer types, particularly in the early phase clinical trial setting. We are meeting this challenge through the construction of the Integrated Procedures Unit at The Christie, which is unique in the UK. This state-of-the-art facility allows repeat tumour biopsies, from both superficial and deep-seated lesions, to be part of standard patient care and to fit alongside research activity.
We are developing more extensive capabilities in the establishment of in vivo patient-derived models, including PDX and CDX, and advanced cell cultures for drug target validation. Increased resources will also facilitate collection for new tumour focus areas, collection of pre-cancerous samples from COPD patients within the prevention and early detection theme and collection of samples from patients undergoing radiotherapy and proton beam therapy.
The MCRC Biobank
The MCRC Biobank was established in 2008 and currently supports tissue collectors in four NHS Trusts across Greater Manchester, collecting high quality tumour and matched samples with linked clinical data from at least twelve tumour types. From initially focusing on a sample ‘six pack’ of blood, urine and frozen and fixed tissue, the biobank has evolved to collect non-invasive samples types, including plucked hair and ascites, as well as fresh tissue, with rapid delivery to the researcher.
To date, the biobank has collected over 150,000 samples from over 20,000 patients that are routinely used in research activities from across the Centre and MCRC Partnership.
Cancer biomarkers are core to our vision of delivering precision medicine for all.
Cancer Early Detection
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Digital Cancer Centre
Digital research underpins all our research themes. Discover how we leverage technology, AI and data to improve cancer outcomes.
Experimental Cancer Medicine
To improve patient lives, we need new therapies and treatments and early phase clinical trials to continue to be developed.
Radiotherapy plays a vital role in the treatment of cancer and nearly 50% of people receive some form of radiotherapy at some point during cancer treatment.