Precision cancer treatment: Re-defining the biological target with imaging
The EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Imaging in Medical Imaging - Keynote Lecture with Professor Ricky Sharma
Thursday 29 September 2016
12.00 - 13.00: Lunch and Networking - Malet Place Engineering Building, 1st Floor
13.00 - 14.00: Keynote Lecture - Roberts Engineering Building, Room 106
Over the next 10 years, radiotherapy has the potential to advance as rapidly as cancer imaging has done over the past 15 years. Our technical ability to target radiotherapy selectively to cancer cells is becoming a reality. However, a significant gap exists between technical radiotherapy skills and understanding of cancer biology.
When a clear biological rationale exists for the combination, there are several reasons to combine new drugs with precision radiotherapy. For example, drugs such as DNA repair inhibitors can cause intrinsic radiosensitisation of the cancer target, and drugs such as PI3K pathway inhibitors can modulate tumour blood flow. Conversely, radiotherapy can be immunostimulatory and has the potential to influence the systemic treatment of cancer.
In this talk, I will describe examples of each of these treatment strategies from the translational work of my group over the past 8 years. Furthermore, I will explain why I believe biological imaging will be essential to the advancement of precision cancer therapy and to the success of new drug-radiotherapy combinations, including immuno-radio-oncology.
Ricky Sharma graduated in medicine from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom. He trained in general internal medicine, medical oncology and radiation oncology and completed a PhD on DNA damage repair. He is Professor and Chair of Radiation Oncology at University College London and a Scientific Group Leader at the UCL Cancer Institute. He is also an Honorary Consultant in Clinical Oncology at University College London Hospitals, where he has a clinical practice in radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Ricky Sharma is an international authority on the translation of radiobiology from the laboratory to the clinic and on the multi-modality treatment of cancer with precision radiotherapy.