City scientist awarded £1.5m to aid cancer research

A SCIENTIST is set to receive more than £1.5 million from Cancer Research UK to support her research into improving how bowel cancer is diagnosed in Scotland.
Dr Evropi Theodoratou says fundraisers made her research possible. Picture: TSPLDr Evropi Theodoratou says fundraisers made her research possible. Picture: TSPL
Dr Evropi Theodoratou says fundraisers made her research possible. Picture: TSPL

Dr Evropi Theodoratou, 35, has been awarded the money to set up her own research group at the Cancer Research UK Edinburgh Centre – a world-class centre for bowel cancer research based at the University of Edinburgh and the Western General Hospital.

The £1.58m award would not have been possible without the support of everyone who fundraises for Cancer Research UK in Scotland.

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Dr Theodoratou is now urging people in the Capital to back life-saving research – by signing up to Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life in the city’s Holyrood Park this Sunday.

Spaces are still available at the Race For Life event, and the young scientist will also be there on Sunday morning to sound the klaxon and start around 2000 participants on their way.

Originally from Athens, Dr Theodoratou now lives in Edinburgh with her husband and two young daughters, five-year-old Rea and two-year-old Electra.

She said: “It’s amazing to have been awarded this £1.58m funding from Cancer Research UK. I was over the moon when I got the call – research is what I want to do most and it is a very prestigious fellowship which will help me do more.

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But the funding wouldn’t have been possible without the money raised by Cancer Research UK’s supporters.

“It doesn’t matter if you walk, jog or run – by taking part in Race For Life, people in Edinburgh can make a real difference in our fight to beat cancer sooner.

“Every penny counts. Researchers like me are using the money raised to make a real impact in the fight against cancer by finding new and better ways to diagnose and treat the disease.”

Dr Theodoratou and her team are looking for genetic and environmental markers of the disease.

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They hope finding these markers will help them identify groups of people who are at a higher risk of developing bowel cancer at a younger age, so that options such as offering them bowel cancer screening earlier, or other ways of monitoring can be explored.

They also hope to find ways to help doctors identify which patients need to be urgently referred for tests.

Edinburgh has been chosen to host one of the charity’s new Race for Life Family 5K events. An hour after the traditional women-only 5K and 10K events, men, women and children will be able to take part in the new Family 5K, at 1.00pm.