Press Release

Leading researcher to deliver Ninewells Cancer Campaign Lecture

Published on 25 January 2019

One of the country’s foremost cancer researchers will deliver a University of Dundee lecture held in honour of Dr Jacqui Wood.

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Professor Karen Vousden, Chief Scientist at Cancer Research UK, will deliver the third annual Ninewells Cancer Campaign Lecture at the Gannochy Trust Lecture Theatre, Ninewells Hospital, at 1pm on Monday 28 January.

The Director of the p53 Metabolism Laboratory at the Francis Crick Institute, Professor Vousden will discuss her research in to the p53 tumour suppressor gene at the event, which marks Dr Wood’s achievements on behalf of the campaign before her death in 2011.

The annual lecture is one of the Ninewells Cancer Campaign’s biggest public events and highlights the work of the Jacqui Wood Cancer Centre.

Roland Wolf, Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, said, “We are delighted and honoured that in spite of her numerous commitments, Professor Vousden has agreed to deliver this year’s Ninewells Cancer Campaign Lecture. Her research has made an outstanding contribution to our understanding of the pathways which lead cancer and in the identification of new opportunities for cancer treatment.”

Dr Wood was chairman of the Ninewells Cancer Campaign from its foundation in 1991 until her death 20 years later. In 2013, the Jacqui Wood Cancer Centre was opened, fulfilling her ambition to locate the School of Medicine’s clinical and laboratory research work on cancer in a single location.

To date the campaign has raised more than £20 million to support cancer research and treatment in Dundee and is chaired by Lady Fiona Fraser.

The annual Ninewells Cancer Campaign Lecture celebrates Dr Wood’s legacy and welcomes speakers who share her passion for cancer research.

Professor Vousden’s studies have focused on the p53 pathway, which is found in almost all cancers. Her recent work has concentrated on how p53 can contribute to various aspects of health and disease, and its ability to control metabolism. This work has led to increased interest in how changes in metabolism contribute to cancer development, and whether these changes lead to vulnerabilities that might be targeted for cancer therapy.

Prior to her current role, Professor Vousden has held the position of Director of the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute in Glasgow, has been elected as a fellow of the Royal Society, and served on the board of directors of the American Association of Cancer Research. In 2010 she was made a CBE for her services to clinical science.

Dr Gillian Smith, Senior Lecturer at Dundee School of Medicine, said, “Professor Vousden’s work is at the cutting edge of cancer research and it is a huge honour to host her here at the University of Dundee.

“While of huge interest to staff and students here at the University, we welcome members of the public to hear about this crucial area of cancer research.

“Professor Vousden’s career has taken her all over the world and we are delighted to have the opportunity to learn more about her most recent research progress.”

The lecture, ‘Control of metabolism by p53 in cancer and beyond,’ takes place at the Gannochy Trust Lecture Theatre, Ninewells Hospital, at 1pm on Monday 28 January. Admission is free though early arrival is encouraged.

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