Breast Cancer Research Events

Our events aim to bring people with an interest in breast cancer research together in a an inclusive, open and friendly environment, to update knowledge and spark discussion and collaboration.
The second Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium in being planned and will be held at The Old Divinity School, St John's College Cambridge on the 22nd March. 
In 2023 we held two events:
  • The first Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium - bringing researchers together across Cambridge and the UK, with a particular focus on the CRUK Cancer Centres
  • The first Breast Cancer Research Demystified event - bringing people with breast cancer and their family and friends together with the researchers, providing updates on studies that they too part in and what is happening with samples and data that we collect through clinical research. 
Further information on upcoming and past events can be found below.
Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium 2024
Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium 2024 #CPBC2024

The Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium 2024 was held at The Old Divinity School, St John's College Cambridge on the 22nd March 2024. It was attended by over 100 researchers, clinical staff and patients. The varied and engaging programme included a short film of five patients sharing their experiences of breast cancer and taking part in our research, which was followed by a discussion of the informed consent process in clinical research.  There were talks on the latest breast cancer research taking place in Cambridge and across the Centres network, as well as excellent keynote presentations from Lesley Fallowfield, Brighton and Sussex Medical School and René Bernards, Netherlands Cancer Institute. Poster prizes were awarded to Dr Claier Mulvey and Zak Kinsella, who were also selected for a 5 min poster presentation, as well as Sara Pearsall and Giacomo Borsari.  The full event brochure is available below.

Thanks to everyone who attended and provided feedback that will be used to plan future events. A summary of the feedback can be found in the event report: 

Breast Cancer Research Demystified Poster
Breast Cancer Research Demystified, The Old Divinity School, St John's College Cambridge, 2nd Nov 2023

The Precision Breast Cancer Institute  / Cambridge Centre Breast Cancer Virtual Institute welcomed people who have, or have been  treated for breast cancer, their relatives and friends to the first Breast Cancer Research Demystified event.  Over 60 people made it through the stormy weather to the Old Divinity School at St John’s College, Cambridge on evening of the 2nd November.

The event was inspired by members of the Precision Breast Cancer Institute Patient Advisory Group, who wanted to know more about what happens with the data and samples we collect for research, and the impact of the research on current and future NHS treatment. In addition, the NIHR Participant in Research Experience Survey (PRES) commonly reports less satisfaction in the communication of research results or outcomes to participants than other aspects of taking part in the research. Breast Cancer Research Demystified aims to maintain communication with research participants so they are informed of ongoing research and advances that are being made.

For researchers who access de-identified samples and data from people with breast cancer,  it was an opportunity to meet the people who agree to take part in research while undergoing diagnosis, treatment and follow up, and to answer their questions and comments. It was also an opportunity to communicate complicated concepts, techniques and data to a lay and very important audience.

Attendees heard from Alex Fulton, Clinical Research Fellow  working on the Personalised Breast Cancer Program, the Wendy Cooper, Senior Research Associate in the Rosenfeld Group analysing samples and data from the BROVED studies to determine how we detect ctDNA in blood to for the early detection of breast cancer and Alecia-Jane Twigger and Akanksha Anand, from the Khaled and Hannon Groups, respectively, explaining how we are using clinical samples to learn more about Triple Negative Breast Cancer as part of the  Wellcome LEAP project.  

The highlight of the evening was the premiere of the new Breast Cancer research Participant film which can be previewed here and will be officially launched soon.

We’ve received some great feedback and aim to make it a regular event sharing a mix of information about Cambridge-led clinical trials and studies and the research behind them. Get in touch if you would like to be part of future Breast Cancer Research Demystified events

Many thanks to the events team at St John’s College, the presenters all the participants who attended.

Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium, Gillespie Centre, Clare College, Cambridge, 10th Feb 2023

The first Cambridge Precision Breast Cancer Symposium took place at the Gillespie Centre, Clare College, Cambridge on the 10th Feb. Researchers from Cambridge met with colleagues from across the UK, industry representatives and people who are living with breast cancer. International Keynote speakers Ramona Woitek, Head of the Medical Image Analysis and Artificial Intelligence Research Group, Danube Private University, Austria and Prof Judy Garber Director of the Center for Cancer Genetics and Prevention at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, US. Both gave fascinating presentations to open the morning and afternoon sessions.

We heard about Cambridge-based clinical studies and lab-based research from Charlotte Coles and Richard Baird (Department of Oncology), Walid Khaled (Dept of Pharmacology); Dario Bressan, Sunny Omarjee, Kirsty Sawicka and Karen Pinilla (CRUK Cambridge Institute) and Antonis Antoniou (Department of Public Health and Primary Care). From outside of Cambridge, Prof Karen Blyth (CRUK Beatson Institute, Glasgow) explained the complex role of the RUNX/CBFb in breast cancer and Luca Magnani (Imperial College London) described the dormancy of ER positive breast cancer though the many acting roles of Daniel Radcliffe. Insights into how computational networks can be used to model individual patient responses to treatment and the creation of biomaterials to model breast tissue were provided through poster presentations from Matthew Clarke (UCL Cancer Institute) and Jennifer Ashworth (University of Nottingham), respectively.

Special thanks to Annabelle and John who were frank and open sharing their Breast Cancer experiences with the meeting, raising awareness of the impact of a cancer diagnosis during pregnancy and carrying a BRCA mutation and being diagnosed with male breast cancer. Later in the afternoon we got a global perspective of inequalities in diagnosing and treating Breast cancer from Felicia Knaul (University of Miami). The day ended with Richard Gilbertson sharing current progress with the Cambridge Cancer Research Hospital before a well-earned glass of wine.

Over 130 participants attended the 2023 event, representing a range of research interests including academia, commercial companies, the NHS, charitable organisations and breast cancer patients. The event received an overall quality rating of 9/10, along with the following positive statements:
    “Meeting atmosphere felt very friendly and open,”
    “The interdisciplinary approach was great, also very inspirational speakers”
    “This was one of the best days at a conference in my long career. Every presenter was excellent.”
    “The day ran seamlessly from my point of view, thank you!”
    “Thank you Jean and Jason for a fantastic event! Top class”

We were overwhelmed with the positivity of the feedback from both delegates and speakers, and will be incorporating suggestions into our planning for #CPBC2024 Thank to everyone who attended and made it a memorable day.

Programme Contacts

Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Department of Oncology
Programme Lead
University of Cambridge
Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute
Programme Lead
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, University of Cambridge, Other
Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, Department of Oncology
Breast Cancer Programme Manager