Research projects

Finding ways to detect oesophageal cancer sooner

Dr Maria Alcolea
Project period
May 2019 - May 2021
Research Institute
University of Cambridge
Cancer types
Oesphageal cancer
Maria Alcolea Dr Maria Alcolea

Aim of the research

Dr Maria Alcolea aims to identify biomarkers for oesophageal cancer that could be used to detect the disease early.

Meet the scientist

Dr Maria Alcolea is a Principle Investigator in the Wellcome - MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute at the University of Cambridge. After receiving her PhD in 2007 she gained experience in cancer and stem cell biology at Bart's Cancer Institute in London and the Hutchinson/MRC Research Centre before starting her own group in 2015.

More about the research project

There are around half a million people diagnosed worldwide each year with oesophageal cancer. Survival rates have seen little improvement over decades of research and today only around 1 in 8 people will survive for 10 years or more following diagnosis. One of the main reasons for the high mortality from oesophageal cancer is that the disease is often diagnosed at an advanced stage.

Dr Maria Alcolea at the University of Cambridge, England, wants to uncover new ways to diagnose oesophageal cancer early, when the patient has the best chance of survival. To do this, her team are studying the molecular processes that occur as oesophageal cancer develops. Through this work, they hope to identify molecular markers that can be used to detect oesophageal cancer as early as possible.

We are extremely grateful to generous supporters that keep on contributing to charities like Worldwide Cancer Research. These days, when austerity has impacted so much in science, it is encouraging to have faithful supporters that believe in what science can provide to society. This long-term investment in pioneering projects is essential in order to improve the outcome of cancer and most importantly to benefit the quality of life of patients suffering from this devastating disease.
Dr Maria Alcolea

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