From left to right: Corinna Alberg (Cambridge Africa), Maike De La Roche (CRUK Cambridge Institute), Grace Collord (CUH), Amos Burke (CUH), Joyce Balagadde Kambugu (UCI), Gill Currie (CRUK Cambridge Centre), Godfrey Osinde (UCI), Ezra Anecho (UCI), Suzanne Turner (CRUK Cambridge Centre & Department of Pathology), Jackson Orem (UCI), Nixon Niyonzima (UCI), Evelyn Brealey (Cambridge Global Health Partnerships).

A group of senior representatives from the Uganda Cancer Institute have visited Cambridge to strengthen  collaborations and explore further opportunities for improving outcomes for cancer patients both in Uganda and in the UK.

The visit was organised as a result of existing links with the Cambridge-Africa Programme and researchers Dr Maike de la Roche (Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute) and Dr Suzanne Turner (Department of Pathology and CRUK Cambridge Centre) who work with the Uganda Cancer Institute.

The five visitors from the Uganda Cancer Institute spent a week visiting cancer research facilities at Institutes and Departments across the University and Cambridge University Hospitals, including the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, Departments of Pathology, Paediatrics, Oncology and Radiology, the Hutchison MRC Centre and oncology clinics across the Hospitals.

Cambridge is a world leading city for cancer research and the Uganda Cancer Institute is a Centre of Excellence for the whole East Africa region. Together there is an even greater breadth of knowledge.

Dr Caroline Trotter, Director, Cambridge-Africa

These conversations have sparked several potential areas for collaboration, including training schemes, clinical guideline development,  and basic and applied research. Collaborative initiatives have already begun, with the arrival of early career researchers from the UCI to spend two months at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute getting an immersive hands-on experience with our research groups. Further news about the development of other initiatives will be available over the coming months.

At the end of the week, Dr Jackson Orem (Executive Director), Dr Nixon Niyonzima (Director of Research and Training), and Dr Joyce Balagadde Kambugu (Head of Paediatric Oncology) all spoke at the ‘Cancer and Global Health’ event, bringing together academics, clinicians, and wider society to understand and propose solutions to the most pressing challenges in cancer and global health. 

By working with Cambridge, the Uganda Cancer Institute has a lot to gain through harnessing the immense capacity in cancer science and applied research in prevention, early detection and diagnosis, as well as effective treatment.

Dr Jackson Orem, Executive Director, Uganda Cancer Institute

Dr Jackson Orem, Executive Director at UCI said “The team received overwhelming and enthusiastic welcome from the entire leadership and staff of all the Institutions visited. By working with Cambridge, the Uganda Cancer Institute has a lot to gain through harnessing the immense capacity in cancer science and applied research in prevention, early detection and diagnosis, as well as effective treatment”.

Dr Caroline Trotter, Director at Cambridge-Africa added “Cambridge is a world leading city for cancer research and the Uganda Cancer Institute is a Centre of Excellence for the whole East Africa region. Together there is an even greater breadth of knowledge. We look forward to strengthening links between Uganda and Cambridge through further collaborative projects and combined training schemes, helping to develop the next generation of international cancer researchers.”

Dr Suzanne Turner, Department of Pathology and CRUK CC said “Further developments in cancer research will only be realised through collaboration at all levels, both within Cambridge and also globally with international partners. This is one of the main aims of the CRUK Cambridge Centre and our links with the Uganda Cancer Institute are a key example of this. We look forward to working more closely with researchers and clinicians in Uganda to share our expertise but also to benefit from their experience and knowledge in order to end death and disease caused by cancer.”