Head of Section
Professor Jesper Lagergren
The Section of Gastrointestinal Cancer conducts clinical research in the aetiology, treatment and prognosis of oesophago-gastric (upper gastrointestinal) and colorectal (lower gastrointestinal) cancer.
Globally, there are 2.7 million new cases of these tumours annually, which is, for example, more than breast and prostate cancer put together. The incidence of adenocarcinoma of the oesophagus is higher in the United Kingdom than anywhere else in the world. Surgery is the cornerstone in the curatively intended therapy of these tumours.
Upper Gastrointestinal Cancer
Working closely with the Upper Gastrointestinal surgical group at St Thomas' Hospital, led by Professor Robert Mason, we run several clinical research projects in parallel directed towards oesophageal cancer within the group and with external collaborators. Most of our research is patient-oriented and based on large cohorts of patients who have undergone oesophageal cancer surgery. We also have a specific interest in reconstructive surgery of the upper gastrointestinal tract. Our research is heavily dependent on very fruitful collaborations.
Internally (King's College London and Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust), we collaborate with Professor Christopher Mathew at in genetic studies of squamous cell carcinoma of the oesophagus, and with Professors Vicky Goh and Gary Cook in imaging research.
Representatives of the multi-disciplinary upper gastrointestinal cancer team importantly contribute to our research: Dr Fuju Chang (histopathology), Nick Maisey (Medical Oncology), Andy Gaya (Clinical Oncology), Dr Jason Dunn (Gastroenterology), Vicky Goh (Radiology), Gary Cook (Nuclear Medicine), Orla Hynes (Nutrition and Dietetics), and Joanna Taylor (Nursing).
Externally, we have as a strong academic link with two research groups at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm Sweden: Upper Gastrointestinal Surgery led by Professor Jesper Lagergren and Surgical Care Science led by Professor Pernilla Lagergren.
We also collaborate with the London Cancer Alliance partners in Upper Gastrointestinal surgery research. We collaborate with Professor David Cunningham and Mr William Allum at the Royal Marsden and Professor George Hanna at Imperial College London.
We constitute a key centre in the OCCAMS collaboration, led by Professor Rebecca Fitzgerald at Cambridge, in research addressing molecular targets for prediction of prognosis after surgery for oesophageal adenocarcinoma.