Professor John Yarnold
Academic Title: Professor of Clinical Oncology
Tel: 0208 661 3891/3388
Location: Orchard House, Sutton
Our major research focus is investigation of the role of fraction size in adjuvant radiotherapy in breast cancer.
National trials led by our team in collaboration with The Institute of Cancer Research’s Clinical Trials and Statistics Unit involve more than half the UK's radiotherapy centres and have established schedules using fewer, larger radiotherapy fractions as the standard of care in the UK and, increasingly, overseas. Our current trials include an evaluation of a 5-fraction schedule of whole breast radiotherapy delivered in five days.
Translational research includes investigation of the molecular basis of sensitivity to fraction size, which varies between tissues and is modulated by DNA repair processes. The aim of our work is to identify biomarkers that predict tumour response to fraction size, allowing stratification of patients into more individualised treatment regimens.
Other research interests include the modulation of chronic adverse effects of radiotherapy using hyperbaric oxygen in the context of a randomised sham controlled trial in patients with complications of pelvic radiotherapy.
Professor Yarnold has been chief investigator of 15 randomised clinical trials involving more than 15,000 patients.
The overall aim is to improve the evidence underpinning current radiotherapy practices in cancer patients. He led the first-ever randomised clinical trial conducted at The Institute of Cancer Research, one of a sequence of trials that led to the establishment of a single dose of radiotherapy (replacing 10-20 fractions) as international standard of care for patients requiring palliative radiotherapy for chronic pain due to uncomplicated skeletal metastases.
His current research focuses on the evaluation of a 5-fraction schedule of whole breast radiotherapy as an alternative to the international standard 25-fraction regimen.