Health

Making chemotherapy kinder for childhood leukaemia

Making chemotherapy kinder for childhood leukaemia

Making chemotherapy kinder for childhood leukaemia
Dr Rosanna Jackson. Credit: Cancer Research UK

Chemotherapy often gets a bad reputation – mainly down to the side effects it can cause.

This bad reputation can be hard to shake off. And it often stops people hearing the vast improvements that have been made in how chemotherapy is used.

I can remember first learning about chemotherapy in my undergraduate pharmacology degree. I couldn’t believe how much research has gone into making it better for patients. And although this research rarely hits the headlines, a small change in how a patient is treated can make a real difference to both their chance of survival and quality of life.

So when it came to choosing what to research for my Ph.D., I chose a project aiming to improve existing treatments.

I was fortunate enough to be offered a Cancer Research UK-funded Ph.D. position at Newcastle University, looking at ways to personalise the use of drugs for a type of blood cancer often diagnosed in children, called acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL).

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