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Research into urological cancers

TOUR: Making major advances in the fight against urological cancers

Thanks to the support of many generous donors, our team of clinicians and researchers are working on ground-breaking clinical trials for all urological cancers.  

The TOUR (Translational Oncology and Urology Research) team aims to turn the latest research into medical practice and to improve patient treatments and outcomes in bladder, prostate, renal and testicular cancers both at Guy’s and throughout the world.  

Here are a selection of the many projects the team are working on: 

Bladder cancer

Although bladder cancer is the seventh most common cancer in the UK, proportionally it has much less research funding than breast or prostate cancer.  

However, in July 2017, Dr Simon Chowdhury and Dr Mieke Van Hemelrijck’s TOUR team was awarded a transformational donation by the Graham and Dianne Roberts Charitable Settlement to establish a bladder cancer biobank, with the aim of advancing knowledge and treatment of bladder cancer.  

The team is working on several clinical trials – four of these are examining treatments that boost the body’s own immune system in the fight against cancer.  These trials are testing if treatments can be more effective than those currently available, and if they can be used, post-surgery, to prevent cancer returning.  

Prostate cancer

Guy’s and St Thomas’ Prostate Cancer Services is among the busiest in the world with over 1,000 newly diagnosed cases a year, and due to the diversity of our catchment area our prostate cancer biobank, established in 2013, has provided an outstanding platform for research.  

One of many trials the team is looking at is the STAMPEDE trial. This successful trial showed that chemotherapy dramatically improves survival for men with advanced prostate cancer and it is now routinely used.  

Renal cancer

Each year in the UK, 12,500 people are diagnosed with renal cancer.  For those whose cancer has already spread at the point of diagnosis, the average survival is three years.  

Since 2005, however, seven new drugs have been shown to increase survival rates. The team has been involved in four of the pivotal trials that introduced these drugs and they have benefited many at Guy’s and St Thomas' and thousands of patients around the world.  

Testicular cancer

Testicular cancer is the most common cancer of young men and while curable it causes significant side-effects including distress and long term toxicity.   

The team are involved in several trials looking to improve treatment of testicular cancer.  This includes lowering the amount of curative treatment given to avoid long-term toxicity and looking at the genetics of testicular cancer to see if the risk is passed on between generations.  

Inspired by the work of the TOUR team?  You can make a donation to TOUR using the link below:

Donate here

Elsewhere on this website

Landmark bladder cancer study launched
Ground-breaking research into a ‘forgotten’ cancer that kills 15 people every day in the UK is set to increase our understanding of the disease. The radical new study will investigate how different lifestyle factors, such as how much patients exercise, impact health professionals’ ability to treat bladder cancer.

Significant donation enables important bladder cancer research
A major donation from the Graham and Dianne Roberts Charitable Settlement will help Guy's and St Thomas' fight bladder cancer. Graham died from the disease in July 2016, following 20 months of treatment led by Dr Simon Chowdhury and his colleagues at Guy’s Hospital.

Rapid Researchers back for another urban challenge
In 2016, a dedicated team of cancer researchers at Guy’s were among 250 people who took part in the Guy's Urban Challenge. But research never ends and they returned to take on the challenge in 2017.