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Merseyside Regional Head and Neck Cancer Centre
How will head or neck cancer affect my life

Latest edition of the Head & Neck Oncology Clinical Trials Newsletter

Click here for the Spring 2015 Head and Neck Clinical Trials Newsletter

Aintree Head and Neck Cancer Research Team - 'Stand up to Cancer'

Aintree Head & Neck Cancer HOPON Research team

As part of the 'Stand Up To Cancer' promotion, Cancer Research UK have published blogs written by members of the Aintree Head and Neck Cancer Research Team with regard to the pearls and pitfalls involved in developing research studies and recruiting Cancer patients on to Clinical Trials.

The Blogs written by Professor Richard Shaw and the Research Nurse Team are focusing on the HOPON (Hyperbaric Oxygen in the Prevention of Osteoradionecrosis) study which has been funded by donations to Cancer Research UK.

Click here to view Professor Shaw's Blog.

Click here to view the Nurses Blog.

Professor Richard Shaw,  Chief Investigator of the HOPON study

Professor Richard Shaw discusses how research at the Mersey Regional Head and Neck Cancer Centre is making a difference.

Professor Richard Shaw alongside Head and Neck Research Fellows Mr Andrew Schache, Mr Michael Ho and Mr Jag Dhanda as well as clinicians from Aintree University Hospital and Liverpool University appear in this short film about how research grants have helped to shape and continue to develop research and treatment here at the Mersey Regional Head and Neck Cancer Centre.

Professor Richard Shaw discusses how Research is developing with the help of RCS funds and grant awards


Two new PhDs in Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery attract £415,000 funding at University of Liverpool & Aintree NHS Foundation NHS Trust.

As part of a major expansion in head and neck cancer research in Merseyside and Cheshire, local investigators have secured £415,000 from several research councils to support two PhD projects.

From L to R, Ms Fazilet Bekiroglu, Prof Simon Rogers, Prof James Brown, Dr Janet Risk, Mr Andrew Schache, Mr Jag Dhanda, Mr Terry Jones, Dr Lakis Liloglou, Prof Ross Sibson, Mr Richard Shaw

The first, "Epigenetic Interactions in HPV16-mediated oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma" has been awarded £180,000 from the Wellcome Trust / RCS Faculty of Dental Surgery Research Training Fellowship scheme and will support Mr Andrew Schache's PhD, supervised by Dr Lakis Liloglou, Mr Richard Shaw & Dr Janet Risk. This will explore the biology behind the recent epidemic of HPV-16 associated tonsil cancers. In particular, the project will focus on the differences between HPV-positive and HPV-negative cases and the epigenetic interactions between the virus and host genomes during tumour development. The group is also leading an industry sponsored UK prevalence study and a CRUK phase 1 clinical trial on HPV-16 mediated head and neck tumours, and has organised an international meeting on HPV-associated head and neck carcinogenesis (Liverpool, 19 Nov 2010)

The second PhD study "The Genetic Determinants of Extracapsular Spread in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma: Exploiting the Contribution of Next Generation Sequencing" has been awarded £135,000 jointly by the British Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, the Royal College of Surgeons Research Department and Saving Faces Foundation. This will support Mr Jag Dhanda in his study focussing on the genetic causes of oral cancer and is supervised by Prof Ross Sibson, Mr Richard Shaw and Dr Janet Risk. Additionally Clatterbridge Research Trust has awarded £100,000 to cover costs of new array and DNA sequencing technologies for this oral cancer research programme. Oral cancer is the 6th commonest cancer worldwide and Liverpool has the highest incidence in the country. Work from Aintree has previously shown that the most aggressive cases can be predicted by the pattern of lymph node metastasis and the molecular basis of this will now be characterised. The group is very active in all aspects of oral cancer research including two newly funded Cancer Research-UK clinical trials run from the Cancer Research-UK Liverpool Cancer Trials Unit.

Mr Schache previously trained in New Zealand and London but is continuing his research and SpR training in Liverpool. Mr Dhanda is a West Midlands SpR who has elected to undertake his research in Liverpool. The consultants in oral & maxillofacial surgery at Aintree are Professors Brown & Rogers, Mr Shaw and Ms Bekiroglu.

The head and neck department in Aintree is internationally recognised for its research output in clinical and basic science as well as its clinical trials in head and neck malignancy. Within the University of Liverpool, Institute of Translational Medicine, Department of Molecular & Clinical Cancer Medicine major initiatives for head and neck cancer research are being co-ordinated by Mr Richard Shaw and Mr Terry Jones from the newly opened Liverpool Cancer Research-UK Centre.

Not only are these the first two clinician PhDs within our region for head and neck cancer, but they are also the first recipients for the respective funding schemes.