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Our research into blood cancer

Our scientists have led research into understanding the biology of blood cancers and discovered genetic variants linked to risk.

We are developing new ways of treating and diagnosing diverse types of blood cancers, including:

  • Leukaemia
  • Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Multiple myeloma

Our latest blood cancer news

Meet our researchers

Our progress against blood cancers

Childhood leukaemia

Professor Sir Mel Greaves’ work has underpinned new treatments for childhood leukaemias by examining the genetic influences and biological pathways that first cause disease. Read more about childhood cancers.

Clinical trials

Dr Charlotte Pawlyn and Dr Martin Kaiser are leading laboratory research teams and clinical trials of new treatments for myeloma, a type of blood cancer that develops in the bone marrow.

Our researchers, in partnership with The Royal Marsden and the UK Myeloma Research Alliance, have developed large-scale studies across UK hospitals that have led to the approval of new treatments such as the use of the thalidomide derivative, lenalidomide, as maintenance therapy after autologous stem cell transplant.

Drug development

We discovered a new drug that could counteract drug resistance in patients with cancers including acute myeloid leukaemia.

Dr David Taussig, is leading the Phase I trial of the drug which is a dual inhibitor of cancer-driving proteins from the Aurora and FLT3 families.

Genetic risk

Professor Richard Houlston led one of the largest population studies of blood cancers, which showed that people with a parent, sibling or child affected by blood cancer are more likely to be diagnosed with the disease. In the future, the results could help to identify people most at risk of these diseases, where genetic testing, medical observation and counselling could be beneficial.

Novel imaging

Dr Christina Messiou was one of the first radiologists to provide a novel imaging service for patients with myeloma known as whole body diffusion weighted MRI. She is established internationally as an authority and also trains other radiologists in this approach.

Your support helps

As a UK charity, our life-saving research relies on the generosity of individuals and organisations. Our supporters help us make a difference to the lives of cancer patients and their families everywhere.


Latest news on blood cancers

Meet our researchers

Professor Richard Houlston

Richard Houlston's research focuses on genetic susceptibility to cancer. He is Head of the Division of Genetics and Epidemiology.

Professor Richard Houlston

Professor Mel Greaves

Find out more about Mel Greaves and his team.

Professor Mel Greaves

Dr Charlotte Pawlyn

Charlotte Pawlyn leads the Myeloma Biology and Therapeutics Team at the ICR and is an Honorary Consultant in Haematology at The Royal Marsden.

Dr Charlotte Pawlyn

Dr Martin Kaiser

Dr Martin Kaiser’s Team aims to design gentler, tailored therapies for patients with multiple myeloma, an immune cell cancer of the bone marrow.

Dr Martin Kaiser