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Cancer research must focus on how cancer cells evolve, new UK strategy argues

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i4087 (Published 22 July 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i4087
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

Understanding how cancer cells evolve in individual patients is key to developing more effective treatment strategies to improve long term survival, the UK Institute of Cancer Research has argued in its research strategy for the next five years.

“Cancer evolution is the single biggest challenge we face in creating better treatments for patients,” said Paul Workman, chief executive of the institute, which is based in London.

“We have seen some great advances against cancer, but so often we find that the disease evolves, becoming ever more complex and genetically diverse, and finds ways to resist the effects of therapy,” he explained. “Cancer doesn’t stand still.”

To tackle this challenge, the …

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