Cancer Research…what’s it all about?

Recently I was invited by Cancer Research UK to a research lab visit at the Cardiff Cancer Research Centre.

This world renowned facility in Cardiff is something I knew little about, and as a fundraiser and volunteer it was brilliant to have the opportunity to hear what happens there and how money raised and donated is put to such good use.

At the centre they research different types of cancer including breast, bowel, leukaemia and lung cancer. You can find out more here –

A group of us attended the afternoon at the centre and heard from Dr Alexa Bishop who is the Research Engagement Manager, followed by Dr Matt Smalley who gave a very interesting presentation about breast cancer research, how far it has come and what type of things they are looking into now, including hoping to make treatment for breast cancer more targeted. It was incredibly interesting to listen to and hear all about the work they do.

We then went up to the lab, split into groups and worked our way round different stages of areas of research, from finding out about extracting cells from tumours, seeing them under a microscope, to actual hands on extracting dna from cells which we all got to have a go at and I was very relieved not to break anything!

I’m not very “science minded” but it was all done on a level even I could keep up with and learn from and it was truly fascinating to see where all this amazing research takes place, see some of the equipment involved and meet the very clever people who dedicate themselves to this.


I was really grateful to have the chance to go along and now know that the efforts of me and my friends and family doing crazy things like Pretty Muddy and Race for Life have a genuine impact right here in Cardiff.

I’ve told quite a few people about the day and many have said how interesting it sounded,they’d love to be able to go too.

Well…you can do just that! Consider yourself invited!

Come along to Cardiff Cancer Research Open Day on Saturday 20th September 2014 from 10am – 3pm.
Hosted by the Cancer Research UK Cardiff Centre, this free event takes place at the Hadyn Ellis Building, Maindy Road, Cardiff, CF24 4HQ and will give you the opportunity to chat to cancer research scientists and doctors, to understand more about how discoveries are being taken from the lab into treatments designed to benefit cancer patients.
You will be able to go “behind the scenes” in the laboratories, with the chance to actually look at cancer cells under the microscope and have a go at being a scientist. There will also be a range of short talks on many interesting cancer topics (all aimed at a lay audience), with local experts on hand to answer any questions and learn more about the science behind the research with hands-on demonstrations and games.

If your children fancy being a scientist for the day they can build a cell and see microscopic cells.

If you’ve been affected by cancer, meet local researchers and find out about how todays research will become the cancer treatments of tomorrow.

Maybe you’re a student interested in a career in the cancer field? Meet researchers, doctors, nurses and clinical trials staff to find out about their jobs.

Raised money for Cancer Research UK and always wondered what happened to it? Come along and learn more about cancer research and progress in Cardiff.

If you would like to attend this event, please register online or contact to book a place or for more information.

I’ll be there, hope some of you can make it too!

PowerPoint Presentation


2 thoughts on “Cancer Research…what’s it all about?

  1. Wow! Sounds so interesting, I would love to go to that. The more I learn about Cancer and Cance research the more fascinating it becomes! Will have to see if I can make it up there. Nx


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