Our groundbreaking research

Together with our academic partner, the Institute of Cancer Research, The Royal Marsden is the largest comprehensive cancer centre in Europe, giving you access to the latest cancer treatments.

Not only are our doctors, surgeons and clinical staff internationally renowned for their commitment to the highest quality patient care, they are also responsible for world-leading research into new diagnostic techniques and treatments. As a renowned centre of research, we consistently attract the best and brightest experts in oncology and cancer research.

This emphasis on research and our bench-to-bedside approach means that Royal Marsden patients have faster access to drugs, treatments, clinical trials and techniques that are not available anywhere else in the world. 

Our Biomedical Research Centre

The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) for cancer is a partnership between The Royal Marsden Foundation Trust and The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR). 

As an NIHR BRC our aim is to drive pioneering research into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer, and to translate advances in biomedical research into patient benefits.

The Royal Marsden and the ICR work to produce high quality scientific research, translational studies, and patient care. We pride ourselves on pursuing excellence every step of the way, from meticulously designed bench experiments and clinical trials, to our level of bedside patient care when delivering new treatments. This is our ‘bench to bedside’ approach to cancer research.

For more information about the BRC, visit the BRC website.

Centre for Molecular Pathology

The Royal Marsden and The Institute of Cancer Research opened a new research facility at Sutton in 2012. The centre specialises in ‘translational’ science with advanced molecular diagnostics – accelerating the transformation of scientific knowledge and laboratory research into new treatments and techniques that benefit patients at The Royal Marsden and beyond.

Consequently, we can offer our patients early access to the very latest diagnostic techniques and treatment available – administered by one of the very best cancer care teams in the world today.

Treatments pioneered at The Royal Marsden and The Institute of Cancer Research

Some of the treatments pioneered here include:

  • research on groundbreaking drugs such as Herceptin and Tamoxifen
  • intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) for head and neck cancer
  • pioneering new techniques in robotic surgery
  • new techniques in stem cell transplant treatment
  • development of prostate cancer drugs abiraterone, xofigo, cabazitaxel, enzalutamide and PARP inhibitors
  • melanoma drugs ipiluminab and verumarfenib
  • HeartSpare radiotherapy techniques to reduce damage to healthy tissue
  • PAM50 genetic testing in breast cancer
  • genetic testing in lung cancers

Clinical trials

The Royal Marsden is a world-leading research centre consistently at the forefront of cancer innovation.

Where relevant, our patients have the opportunity to enrol on clinical trials that give them access to the latest cancer drugs and therapies.

In 2014 alone, we recruited over 4000 patients to more than 450 clinical research projects to help us improve treatment and outcomes for patients here and around the world.

Find out more about the clinical trials at The Royal Marsden.