That Cancer Conversation


The vaccination of a generation

Season 1, Ep. 4

Last year, the World Health Organisation (WHO) announced an ambitious plan: to create a ‘cervical cancer-free future’. The potential reward is huge. If we succeed, cervical cancer will become the first cancer to be ‘eliminated’ on this scale.

Globally, cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women - 99% of cases worldwide are caused by a few high-risk strains of a common virus called human papillomavirus and in many countries around the world, people are given a vaccine to prevent HPV at an early age.

Despite data from countries like Sweden and the UK showing that vaccination programmes reduce cervical cancer rates dramatically, there are still countries - such as the USA - that don't have universally accessible programmes.

We hear from Dr Ishu Kataria - Public Health Researcher at RTI International, whose work into non-communicable diseases has found her working with the UN and WHO. Right now, she and her team are working out how to get the HPV vaccine to more than 70 million girls in India.

How to find out more about Dr Kataria's work:

To read more about the topics discussed:

You can listen and subscribe for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and wherever you get your podcasts.


More Episodes

Friday, October 8, 2021

Black in Cancer

This episode, we're joined by Sigourney Bell, a researcher at the University of Cambridge, whose work looks to find new treatments for supratentorial ependymoma, a rare children's brain cancer.Outside of the lab, Sigourney is the co-founder of Black in Cancer, a global organisation that aims to strengthen the network between Black people in the cancer space whilst highlighting Black excellence in cancer research and medicine.During Black History Month, Black in Cancer runs a week of events across various social media platforms and organises webinars to help educate researchers, medical experts, and those affected by cancer.We hear about what the challenges are of working on a rare children's cancer, find out what led to the founding of Black in Cancer, and learn what's on the agenda from October 10th - 15th for Black in Cancer Week 2021.How to find out more about Black in Cancer:Follow Sigourney at @siggs28 on Twitter and InstagramCheck out @blackincancer on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.Black in Cancer websiteCheck out #BlackinCancerWeek21To read more about the topics discussed:Delivering the future of paediatric brain tumour therapy - Cancer Research UKGilbertson Lab - Cancer Research UK Cambridge InstituteThe Legacy of Henrietta Lacks - Johns Hopkins MedicineHenrietta Lacks: science must right a historical wrong - NatureHenrietta Lacks’ estate sues drug company that sold her cells - The GuardianYou can listen and subscribe for free on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and wherever you get your podcasts.
Thursday, September 2, 2021

Can we grow the treatments of tomorrow?

Season 1, Ep. 2
From malaria to multiple sclerosis, plants have given us compounds which help treat countless conditions. But could a tree growing on your street hold the next life-changing drug?From Madagascar to a Kew Gardens in London, we explore how scientists across the globe use indigenous knowledge and pharmaceutical science to help develop the treatments of tomorrow.And in a world-first, a cannabis-derived drug, known as Sativex, is being trialled in combination with chemotherapy to see if it could be used to help people with a certain type of aggressive brain cancer.The botanical history of medicine (2:04)How do we find the plant medicines of tomorrow? (6:10)The search for a chemical needle in a botanical haystack (9:09)Making drugs: converting cuttings into capsules (14:02)Is it more complex than putting a leaf in a pill? (18:28)Sativex: trialling a cannabis-derived spray on brain cancer (22:50)Do we know how cannabinoids work on brain tumour cells? (26:51)Cannabis and cancer: it's not that simple (28:43)ARISTOCRAT is a randomised phase II study of temozolomide with or without cannabinoids in patients with recurrent glioblastoma.It's being funded by The Brain Tumour Charity and co-ordinated by the Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit at the University of Birmingham.ARISTOCRAT is due to begin recruiting just over 230 patients across all UK nations in early 2022.To learn more about the ARISTOCRAT trial, you can check out:World-first trial tests cannabis-based drug on aggressive brain tumours - University of LeedsGlioblastoma Research: Phase II Clinical Trial of Cannabis Derivatives - The Brain Tumour CharityIf you’d like to talk to someone, our nurses are available Monday to Friday 9-5pm on freephone 0808 800 4040.