Login to Pancreatic Cancer UK

Understanding mechanisms that lead to tumour growth in pancreatic cancer

Recipient: Alejandro Noval (Future Leader)

Supervisor: Dr Stephanie Kermorgant and Professor Christopher Heeschen

Host Institution: Barts Cancer Institute at Queen Mary, University of London

Title: Understanding mechanisms that lead to tumour growth in pancreatic cancer

Type of award: 2015 Future Leaders Fund

Funding: £100,000

Many pancreatic cancer tumours are resistant to treatment by chemo- and radiotherapy and we desperately need new approaches to pancreatic cancer treatments. 

Under the supervision of Dr Stephanie Kermorgant and Professor Chris Heeschen, Alejandro Noval will be investigating the role of autophagy (a self-degradative process that is important for balancing sources of energy at critical times in development and in response to nutrient stress) and signalling through a growth factor receptor called c-Met. Both processes are known to play a part in the growth of pancreatic cancer cells and this project aims to understand the mechanisms through which they act and interact.

If the team can understand exactly these mechanisms, they will be able to start developing new drugs that switch off these processes, which could lead to a promising new type of pancreatic cancer treatment.