Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank celebrates 10 years, will change lives for generations

Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank celebrates 10 years, will change lives for generations. Chinnapong/Shutterstock.com

Scientists at the UK’s largest breast cancer tissue bank are celebrating the remarkable advances it has enabled in breast cancer research during its first decade.

The Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank opened in 2012 to give researchers access to breast tissue, breast cells and blood samples from breast cancer patients. The Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank has released a statement about findings and research. Stating that there has been accelerated progress towards faster diagnosis and better treatments for breast cancer patients.

 The Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank has supported research teams in 12 countries, including the UK, Taiwan, USA, Italy, Finland, Sweden, South Korea, Portugal, Norway, Spain, Switzerland and Germany.

Professor Louise Jones, Co-principal Investigator of the Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank and Professor of Breast Pathology at Barts Cancer Institute, Queen Mary University of London said, “The projects the Tissue Bank supports are phenomenal and I’m confident they will continue to help provide new breakthroughs for women and men diagnosed with breast cancer.”

Some of the key findings include-

  • Scientists from Queen Mary University of London and the Francis Crick Institute used samples from the Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank to better understand how obesity can contribute to the development of breast cancer at a molecular level. This helped them to identify a treatment that may reduce the risk of people developing breast cancer linked with obesity.
  • Samples from the Tissue Bank have contributed to research at the University of York, which found a protein on cancer cells that may help breast cancer spread around the body. Researchers think this finding could eventually lead to a diagnostic tool for breast cancer.
  • Researchers at the Barts Cancer Institute, Queen Mary University of London, used healthy cells donated to the Tissue Bank to recreate a structure closely resembling breast ducts in the lab. The researchers are now using this 3D model to study an early form of breast cancer.
  • Brenda Barnett, 64, from Aberdeen was diagnosed with stage 2 invasive ductal carcinoma plus DCIS in January 2020 and was asked to donate tissue samples to research following her lumpectomy surgery. Barnett said, “I was a grandmother of four when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and thanks to research I lived to see the birth of my fifth grandchild. Getting a breast cancer diagnosis is life-changing, but I was lucky. They caught my cancer early and treated it quickly so now I have the privilege of watching all five grandchildren grow up together.”

Barnett said, “the work they do at the Breast Cancer Now Tissue Bank is vital and will change lives for generations to come.”


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Written by

Rocio Flores

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