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Worldwide Cancer Research findings presented to House of Commons

A PhD student funded by Worldwide Cancer Research at the University of Hertfordshire has this week displayed her research at the House of Commons.

Deborah Ogbeni was selected along with 175 other finalists from over 500 entries across the country to share her research into identifying a potential new treatment for pancreatic cancer. The event was organised by STEM as part of British Science Week.

Her work, an extension of a project initiated by Dr Stewart Kirton and Dr Sharon Rossiter at the University of Hertfordshire and Dr Tatjana Crnogorac-Jurcevic at Queen Mary University London, was funded by the charity Worldwide Cancer Research to investigate treatments for this form of cancer.

Deborah’s research has identified lead compounds that could be developed as a suitable drug to prevent the spread of cancer. Further research is needed, but the drug has the potential to both slow down the progression of pancreatic cancer and make it more vulnerable to chemotherapy.

Deborah said:

“It was an honour to be able to showcase my research at such a prestigious event. I am excited to think that this research could one day improve the treatment potential and life chances of people with pancreatic cancer.”

STEM for Britain is a national competition which aims to raise the profile of Britain's early-stage researchers at Westminster by engaging Members of both Houses of Parliament with current science, engineering and mathematics research being undertaken in the UK. Deborah’s research was part of the Biological and Biomedical Science session and MPs attended to view the range of ground breaking research being carried out in their constituencies.   

Dr Lara Bennett, Science Communications Manager at Worldwide Cancer Research, commented “It is great that Deborah’s project was so successful in identifying potential new cancer drugs for pancreatic cancer. The survival rate for this type of cancer is still extremely low and has not improved much since the 1970s so new treatments are urgently needed. It is a great achievement for Deborah to present her findings in parliament and an experience I am sure she will always remember.”