Clatterbridge staff volunteer to help cancer research

Posted 23rd November 2022

Clatterbridge staff give a blood sample to the biobank

Clatterbridge staff have stepped up to help with cancer research.

A total of 65 staff donated a sample of blood to the Trust’s Biobank at pop-up clinics in Wirral and Liverpool so they could be used in ongoing research studies being carried out at Clatterbridge, or by our research partners across Merseyside and beyond.

The samples will be stored in the Biobank, which reopened at Clatterbridge Cancer Centre – Liverpool in May after its activities were paused during the pandemic. They will be used as control samples when a clinician or academic researcher uses patient-derived samples to perform their work into understanding cancer. The samples will allow researchers to identify biological and genetic processes within the body and find out the differences between non-cancerous cells and cancerous ones.

Jamie Young, Biobank and Clinical Trials Laboratory Manager, said: “We were overwhelmed by the level of enthusiasm, interest and participation these pilot clinics received from all CCC staff. In two days, we have increased the number of samples available for scientific research over 10-fold.

“Across both clinics we took donations from 65 staff members – 29 at CCC-W and 35 at CCC-L – with many more expressing an interest but unavailable on the days that clinics were running.

“This marked level of generosity clearly displays just how dedicated all CCC staff are in helping to bring the best possible options for our patients.”

The donated samples were processed within one hour into plasma or serum and have been frozen at -80C until required for research projects need them.

Jamie said: “Scientific research into cancer helps us to discover things we did not know about the disease, helps us to identify new ways to attack cancer, and helps to evolve our understanding to amend existing treatment options and methods.

"Everyone’s actions, whether in interest or donation, allows us to take those significant strides towards helping our patients get the best possible outcome while living with cancer.”

The Biobank team will run the donation clinics three or four times each year, with the next ones in February or March.

Pictured is Deputy Ward Manager Gail Cottis donating blood to the biobank