The role of the surgeon in contemporary cancer research

Programme stream(s): Treatment
Programme session type(s): Specialist session

Chair: Terry Jones, University of Liverpool, UK
Speaker: Alex Mirnezami, University of Southampton, UK
Speaker: Richard Shaw, University of Liverpool, UK
Speaker: Christobel Saunders, University of Western Australia, Australia


Room: M2-4

The session will cover the role of the surgeon in contemporary high quality translational cancer research. Talks will cover the harvesting and processing of high quality tumour tissue in the context of `window-of-opportunity studies` as well as the role of the surgeon as a clinical scientist and in delivering intra-operative radiotherapy. The session is for all cancer researchers but particularly for surgeons with an interest in collaborating on, or leading, translational research projects / programmes.

Intra-operative Electron beam radiotherapy for advanced and recurrent abdominopelvic malignancies in the UK: Development, implementation, and medium term results
Speaker: Alex Mirnezami
Affiliation: University of Southampton


Intra-operative electron beam radiotherapy (IOERT) is an intensive form of radiotherapy delivered to a targeted zone during surgery. IOERT is most applied for advanced or recurrent malignancies with a high rate of local control failure and positive or close margins at surgery and has become incorporated into national guidelines in North America and some EU countries. To date this modality has not been developed or studied in the UK within an NHS setting. Here we present the challenges in the development and implementation of the first UK IOERT unit and describe the safety and early results from its delivery in the setting of a challenging group of advanced or recurrent abdomino-pelvic malignancies.

Surgery-dependent Translational Research
Speaker: Richard Shaw
Affiliation: NIHR Cancer Research Network (NCRN)


Cancer surgeons occupy a central role in clinical research, not only as the gatekeeper and co-ordinator of patient care, but as advocates and drivers for trials and other studies. Surgeons are active not only in driving surgical trials, but also in multidisciplinary research, window-of-opportunity studies and translational studies.