Awarded to Dr Edward Jarman, University of Edinburgh
The total grant awarded is £50,000
Duration of award: 3 years
Research title: Mapping cell states associated with tumour initiation phenotypes onto PSC for the early identification and characterization of epithelial and immune state changes associated with CCA risk in PSC patients.
PSC Support has awarded £50,000 to Dr Edward Jarman to investigate how the cells in people with PSC can develop into bile duct cancer (cholangiocarcinoma). He will do this by using cutting-edge technology to look at the key cellular and microenvironmental changes that take place in PSC that contribute to the development of tumours.
The potential impact of understanding these changes could be huge for patients. The hope is that this research will find signs to identify which people with PSC are at risk of developing bile duct cancer, early signs of the cancer, and the first steps to developing a medicine to prevent early bile duct cancer from growing in people with PSC.
In a series of experiments using cutting edge technology, Dr Jarman will study cells that are becoming cancerous in people with PSC and mice. He wants to deeply understand the processes at work in cells as they change and start to become cancers.
What will Dr Jarman do?
In a series of experiments using cutting edge technology, Dr Jarman will study cells that are becoming cancerous in people with PSC and mice.
Why is this study important?
Dr Jarman’s research will tell us how common cancer-forming cells are in people with PSC and tell us whether these cells are changing the immune system to help their growth. It will give us insights into whether these changes are indicators of cancer risk in people with PSC or even avenues for medicines to prevent early bile duct cancer forming into tumours.
This study addresses a critical research area for people with PSC: “Identifying warning signals that I may get cancer” and has the potential to lead to medicines to prevent or treat the cancer early.
Although the risk of getting bile duct cancer is small, the impact of getting this cancer is huge. One of the most difficult aspects of living with PSC is dealing with an unpredictable disease and an uncertain future. Some people even describe it as, ‘living with a ticking time bomb inside me.'
Removing or reducing this risk would alleviate some of this very real emotional burden and fear.
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