Main Menu

Tumour Profiling Unit

Overcoming drug resistance is one of the biggest challenges in cancer research but you can help us learn how to overcome it by supporting our Tumour Profiling Unit. 

Dr Amanda Swain is head of the Tumour Profiling Unit
Dr Amanda Swain, Head of the Tumour Profiling Unit

There are some excellent treatments for cancer. But for patients with certain types of tumour, the initial improvement that occurs when they start a course of drug therapy often doesn’t last long, as their tumour can quickly become resistant to that drug.

At the ICR we have an exciting vision that could overcome this problem and allow patients to have their tumour profiled at diagnosis and throughout treatment so that their management plan can be adjusted every time a molecular change occurs. This vision is called the Tumour Profiling Unit (TPU) and it is designed to take advantage of the explosion in genetic information our scientists can now generate about an individual patient’s cancer.

In recent years, new technologies to investigate the genetics of different cancer types have developed at an unprecedented pace. The TPU facilitates analysis of cancer patients’ tumours using these latest, cutting edge technologies.

Armed with such detailed knowledge, we will ultimately be able to better match treatments to a patient’s tumour, allowing us to deliver truly personalised medicine.

We had an overwhelming response to our fundraising campaign to establish the TPU and thanks to the generosity of our donors, the unit is now fully operational.  However, you can still help us to drive forward the success of the TPU, by lending your support to new research projects relating to a range of different types of cancer, as well as to the purchase of cutting-edge technologies and computer power.

If you would like learn more about how you could support research projects in the Tumour Profiling Unit, please contact Thomas Bland, Deputy Director of Development (Trusts and Corporates) on 020 8722 4200 or by email at [email protected].

ICR On BBC Panorama

An episode of Panorama focused entirely on the pioneering work of The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust aired on BBC One.


Thomas Bland Deputy Director Of Development (Trusts and Corporates)