Currently treatment options for those suffering from neuroendocrine tumours (NETs) are limited. In order to develop more successful therapies, an improved understanding of the tumour biology is required.
With this in mind, the Unicorn Foundation is sponsoring postdoctoral research by Dr Christopher Yates at the University of Oxford in 2013. An Endocrinologist from the Royal Melbourne Hospital, Chris Yates will study the role of microRNAs in the development of pancreatic and pituitary NETs with the eminent international NET researcher, Professor Rajesh Thakker.They are studying microRNAs as these may act as tumour suppressor genes or oncogenes (cancer inducing), and because microRNAs have therapeutic potential, as illustrated by their use to treat mouse hepatic and prostate cancers. We wish Chris the best of luck with his research and look forward to seeing the results.
Here is a letter we recently received from Dr Yates in the UK:
Dear Simone and John
I hope you are well. I thought you may be interested in an update from Oxford University. I am making steady progress with my research on neuroendocrine tumours in Prof Rajesh Thakker’s Laboratory and I am also writing two review articles on pituitary and pancreatic neuroendocrine tumours that should be published in 2014. To mark World NET Cancer Day on 10 November I attended an afternoon tea at the British Houses of Parliament with several British MPs to discuss the importance of promoting earlier diagnosis and ensuring all patients get access to the expertise, treatments and care that is available. I also plan to attend the UKINETS meeting and the ENETS meeting in the next few months.
I would like to thank the Unicorn Foundation very much for helping to fund my NET research this year.