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Other research policies

Find out more information on the research policies of Pancreatic Cancer UK.

The use of patient data

Patient records are a valuable resource for health research and access to the information in these records helps researchers better understand disease and develop treatments that can save lives. We recognise the value of patient data but also the responsibility to protect patient confidentiality and to ensure that patients and their families understand how their data are used.

As part of our Research Funding Process we support the AMRC statement on the use of patient data in research and their actions to better develop and standardise processes throughout the NHS. 

The use of animals in research

Pancreatic cancer is a tough one. Less than 7% of people with pancreatic cancer will survive for 5 years in the UK, and survival outcomes have barely shifted in 45 years.

Pancreatic cancer is a complex disease, and our researchers are working hard to piece together information they need to find ways to improve diagnosis and treatment. We fund ground-breaking pancreatic cancer research that aims to find the breakthroughs we desperately need.

Through research, we have made major advances in the treatment of other cancers and some of this research has involved the use of animals. This includes the development of chemotherapy, one of the main treatments for many types of cancer today.

Pancreatic Cancer UK is a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC). We support the principle of using animals in research when there is absolutely no alternative. All AMRC member charities support this principle, as outlined in this statement.

Pancreatic Cancer UK understands and appreciates that people do have concerns about medical research involving animals, and charities providing funding support for it, and shares people's concerns about the well-being of animals in medical research.

We support and expect our researchers to demonstrate a commitment to the '3Rs', a framework which serves to refine experimental techniques and procedures, reduce the number of animals involved in research, and replace animals in research with other models wherever possible. We ourselves have funded such alternatives, such as the use of models called ‘organoids’ – 3D mini-tumours, made from tissue from patients’ cells.

Our funded research is carefully reviewed by our Scientific Advisory Board to ensure that any research involving the use of animals includes a full justification. Our researchers must follow strict laws and require licences from the Home Office for themselves and for the specific research project.

We would like to reassure our supporters that Pancreatic Cancer UK would only consider funding research involving animals if all other possibilities have been carefully and fully considered, the research is not an unnecessary duplication of previous work and it is likely to lead to essential information that could help us take on this tough cancer.

You can find out more about the use of animals in research in the following resources: