Patients in research

Ultimately, it is our patients who allow us to carry out our research:

  • Patients take part in translational research within the context of clinical trials, including trials that are validating and qualifying predictive molecular biomarkers before they are utilised in clinical practice.
  • Evaluating tissue samples provided by patients participating in clinical trials helps us develop the personalised treatments that our research is aimed at delivering.
  • By giving written consent for the future use of their tissues donated for research, they enable us to make new discoveries that push boundaries for research, allowing us to further improve personalised treatment.

Benefits to patients

Being part of a clinical trial is increasingly becoming part of a patient’s cancer care. It is a route which can offer several benefits. For example, a patient may be told that future conventional treatment options are limited, but that being referred to the Drug Development Unit at Oak Ward and joining a targeted Phase 1 trial opens up a whole new set of treatment options.

Although the emphasis is often on testing drug safety rather than providing successful treatment outcomes, patients often speak about the positive effects of taking part in our trials.

Patient and carer research review panel

We believe that it’s important to hear the views of people that our research will potentially affect, to ensure the patient is at the heart of the decision-making process. This is about empowering individuals and communities so that they can play a greater role in shaping healthcare research.

The patient and carer research review panel was set up in 2011 and has already improved research projects being carried out at The Royal Marsden. The panel of up to 20 people meets four times a year to discuss research ideas presented by investigators and to discuss priorities. They also undertake email reviews of documents to make patient information more comprehensible for laypeople.

We are currently looking for people to join the panel. Find out more.

We are also asking patients and carers to submit their recommendations on the research we should be doing. Send your suggestions now.


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