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Breast Cancer Research Group

The Research Challenge:

Our research is aimed at developing new therapies for a form of breast cancer that is currently difficult to treat. This difficult-to-treat form of breast cancer is known as triple-negative breast cancer, so called as it lacks the 3 important biomarkers, ER, PR and HER2. Since patients with triple-negative breast cancers lack these 3 biomarkers, they cannot be treated with drugs such as tamoxifen or Herceptin. Consequently, the only current treatment for these women is chemotherapy. Our aim is to develop a new form of treatment that blocks genes driving the growth of triple-negative breast cancer and that will not cause the side effects associated with chemotherapy.

What we are doing:

Our research is focusing on new drugs that inhibit genes responsible for driving or promoting the growth of triple-negative breast cancer cells. We are testing these drugs on cancer cells grown in the laboratory. This is the first step in the development of all new anticancer drugs.

To date, we have identified a number of promising new treatments for triple-negative breast cancer. Amongst there are drugs that reverse the cancer-causing properties of a mutant gene known as p53. We hope that one of these new drugs will soon be tested in clinical trials in patients with triple-negative breast cancer.

Who we are:

  • Prof Joe Duffy
  • Prof John Crown