We are finding out how immune cell cancers develop and investigating the role that the immune system plays in the growth of cancer.
Our immune system is remarkable. It is made up of many different types of immune cells that work together to protect the body from infection by pathogens such as bacteria, viruses and parasites.
We are investigating what happens a certain type of cell in the immune system, known as B cells, starts growing out of control and develops into blood cancers such as leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. We want to know what happens when B cells mature normally from precursor cells in the bone marrow and discover what has gone wrong when they turn into cancer cells instead.
By taking a detailed look at B cells as they develop and specialise, we can spot small groups of dangerous cells that are particularly likely to turn into cancer and identify the genetic faults that drive B cells to grow out of control. And we are using our knowledge to create new models for the development of B cells and blood cancers in the lab, so that we can find new ways to treat or even prevent these deadly diseases.