Cancer is a disease that directly or indirectly affects the vast majority of Australians and is the second-most common cause of death after cardiovascular disease. The risk of an Australian being diagnosed with cancer by their 85th birthday is estimated to be 1 in 2 for males and 1 in 3 for females.
An estimated 14.1 million new cases occurred worldwide and 8.2 million people died from cancer in 2012. The prevalence, high severity of disease and level of unmet clinical need underscored the World Cancer Declaration by the World Health Organisation in 2013 that calls for cancer societies around the world to collectively work towards reducing the burden of all cancers by 25% within the next 10 years.
Who we are
The Monash BDI Cancer Program is led by Professor Roger Daly, a world leader in research into cancer cell signalling networks. This program brings together 18 outstanding group leaders and their research teams who collectively exhibit expertise across different, but complementary, areas of cancer research. To promote cross-program interaction, a number of group leaders from our other BDI programs, such as Infection and Immunity, are also linked to the Cancer Program as Associates.
In addition, the Monash BDI Cancer Program is integrated with the Monash Partners Comprehensive Cancer Consortium (MPCCC.) Supported by the Victorian Cancer Agency, the Victorian Department of Health and Monash University, MPCCC is an allied network of multidisciplinary cancer professionals and consumers which aims to interlink knowledge and efforts in cancer research and best-practice clinical care to improve outcomes for cancer patients. Professor Gail Risbridger, Director of MPCCC, is also one of our program's Group Leaders
Our major research themes will enable us to address some of the most important and pressing questions in cancer research, including:
- Can a systems-level understanding of cancer cell signalling or the tumour microenvironment identify novel therapeutic strategies?
- Can the current spectrum of cancers sensitive to immunotherapy be extended, and can we identify biomarkers of response to immunotherapy?
- How do changes in epigenetic and transcriptional regulators contribute to the different 'hallmarks' of cancer?