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Discovery Club members learn how big data is transforming cancer research

Dr Bissan Al-Lazikani speaks at The Discovery Club event on 8 March 2016

Dr Bissan Al-Lazikani spoke about how she is developing innovative techniques to extract research and clinical benefit from big data.

Members of The Discovery Club of The Institute of Cancer Research, London, gathered at the Royal Society on 8 March 2016 to learn how our scientists are using big data to help defeat cancer.

Professor Paul Workman, ICR Chief Executive, opened the evening by welcoming guests and thanking supporters. He framed the programme by explaining how big data – cited as potentially transformative to so many fields – also has a critical role to play in helping us to discover smart, individualised cancer therapies. He highlighted how the ICR’s longstanding leadership in drug discovery, cancer evolution and drug resistance positioned us to make breakthroughs in this area as well.

Dr Bissan Al-Lazikani, Team Leader in Computational Biology and Chemogenomics, spoke about how she and her team are developing innovative techniques to extract research and clinical benefit from big data.

Discovery Club members and guests then learned how we are applying these techniques by visiting a number of interactive exhibits, including one showing how biomedical data is being deployed to predict successful drug combination therapies. The evening concluded with drinks, canapés and informal conversations between supporters and ICR scientists and clinicians of all disciplines.

Lara Jukes, Director of Development at the ICR, said: “The Big Data event – the first of our 2016 Discovery Club event series – highlighted the creativity, drive and collaborative focus of our scientists. I am delighted that our friends and supporters had this opportunity to gain real insight into a fast-evolving area of cancer research.”

The Discovery Club is our high-level giving club. Members help us to drive forward our scientific strategy through philanthropic investment in key organisational priorities. For 2016, these include the construction of the Centre for Cancer Drug Discovery, the development of a precision microscopy facility and support for PhD student training. Discovery Club members are invited to join us for a regular series of events featuring our leading scientists and clinicians.

The next Discovery Club event will be held on 14 June 2016. Featuring Dr Marco Gerlinger, Team Leader in our Centre for Evolution and Cancer, it will highlight our research to tackle drug resistance.

To learn more about The Discovery Club, or to get involved, please contact Dr Shira Schnitzer, Head of Major Gifts, at [email protected] or 0207 153 5298.

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