Research strategy

1. The Focus of Our Research:

North West Cancer Research is committed to understanding cancer. To build on previous success in the area, our research portfolio must be sufficiently flexible to incorporate new technologies and advances in treatment.

Our research will help cancer patients in our region, investing in the understanding of the biology of cancer, research into potential treatments and develop our work on prevention and early diagnosis. This must be undertaken in addition to systematically linking the research activities of the charity with appropriate public engagement activities.

Thus our research will improve cancer outcomes, engage the broader public and increase the knowledge flow from laboratories and clinical settings to patients and vice versa.

We will continue our focus of investing in research which will further develop our understanding of the biology of cancer whilst continuing to invest in research into potential approaches to improve the treatment of cancer and patient care. This should build upon our existing major research project funding and particularly the continuously emerging benefits from the discoveries of the molecular mechanisms underlying pathogenesis in various cancers.

2. Purpose and Objectives:

2.1 To promote and carry out research into cancer, its diagnosis and its treatment and to disseminate the results of such research to the public. To achieve this we will:

  • Focus research funding on the scientific quality and potential clinical impact.
  • Provide support to create the right environment for research.
  • Provide support to the right people for research.

The range of research we will cover will include basic, translational and preventative studies.


2.2 The research that we fund should also support our longer term strategic aims, namely that:

  • Less people will die of cancer or patients will survive for longer with a better quality of life.
  • There will be increased and improved treatment options available to all.
  • Improve the transfer of research from bench to bedside.


2.3 Our strategic intentions are grounded on three key principles:

  • Focus: The research we fund will ultimately impact on cancer patients in the region in terms of increasing and improving the treatment options available to them and the quality of care for cancer patients.
  • Partnership: We will adopt a dynamic and participatory approach to all our partnerships in pursuit of achieving the greatest impact possible in the regional fight against cancer.
  • Investment: We will make the necessary investments needed to ensure effective cancer research for the people of the region.


2.4 To achieve this we aim to work with a range of partners to allow us to fund a broad portfolio of research that is in parts:

  • Focussed on understanding the biology of cancer.
  • Addresses areas of diagnosis and treatment, access and care.
  • Seeks to educate and prevent.
  • Supports local, national and international research.

3. Areas of Funding:

3.1 We do not prioritise specific types of cancer research and we will avoid costly infrastructure investment, direct clinical care or high overheads. Our primary aim is to invest in people and high quality projects and to continue to expand our research capacity.


3.2 Potential investment areas will generally cover:

  • Basic biology, clinical and translational research
  • Small scale clinical trials
  • Personal funding (i.e. research/clinical fellowships/postgraduate studies etc)
  • Population and behavioural science.


3.3 We remain committed to putting some funds into small and innovative research grants that may potentially lead to breakthrough/pathfinders, that could in themselves create bigger schemes this can include basic science (including cell division and replication and cell signalling), cancer pharmacology (including  early drug development) and early clinical trials. These initiatives can also build upon existing academic and treatment expertise across our regional footprint.

4. Research Grant Applications:

We have a robust application process with supporting information to guide applicants as to what is acceptable which then leads onto a review process including external assessors and final recommendations being made by our Scientific Committee.

5. Review:

This Research Strategy will be reviewed annually.



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