Clinical Research Office. A partnership between Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Sheffield

Academic Directorate of Specialised Medicine: Haematology

Key Contacts

Name Role
Dr Andy Chantry
Research Lead
Dr Josh Wright
Clinical Lead and Clinical Director
Ian Scott
Operations Director
Kath Knight
Deputy Operations Director
Julie Senior
Deputy Group Finance Manager
Mark Palmer
Directorate Accountant
Directorate Research Coordinator &
Gaurika Kapoor 
Clinical Research Office Coordinator
(Industry-Sponsored Studies)

Haematology Research

(Research Lead on Specialised Medicine Executive – Dr Andy Chantry)

There are five NHS Consultant Haematologists in Haemato-oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation, each with specific clinical and research interest areas and one Senior Clinical Lecturer/Honorary Consultant Haematologist within the University of Sheffield specializing in myeloma research. There are accredited clinical Stem Cell Transplantation facilities and a well established integrated Haemato-Oncology Diagnostic Service (HODS) which incorporates accredited morphology, immunophenotyping, cytogenetics and molecular genetics laboratories. Patient data and outcomes are routinely archived in Network databases. The tertiary services cover approximately a 2 million population base of the North Trent Cancer Network sites.

The Haemato-oncology/Lymphoma Clinical Trial Research Team is integral to the Cancer Network MDT, and is based in the dedicated Cancer Clinical Trials Centre (CCTC) and routinely draws upon established research administration, leadership, governance and education of the NTCRN. They also interact with additional research support within Clinical Trials Facilities (CRF) within Sheffield Teaching Hospitals (RHH CRF). Most of the haematological cancer clinical trials activity is supported by the NCRI, with the remainder industry funded and run via the RHH CRF.

Translational research is performed in collaboration with the Sheffield Myeloma Research Team, University of Sheffield, Department of Oncology (Dr Andrew Chantry) and supported extensively by Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research (LLR). Sheffield has been designated an LLR Centre of Excellence based on the basic scientific and clinical work performed by Professor Peter Croucher, Dr Andrew Chantry and other members of the Sheffield Myeloma

Research Team.

Dr Andrew Chantry was appointed as Senior Clinical Lecturer/Honorary Consultant Haematologist in the Department of Oncology, University of Sheffield/Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in January 2012.  Dr Chantry now leads the Sheffield Myeloma Research Team.  The Sheffield Myeloma Research Team has an established track record of excellent research into myeloma bone disease with a strong publication record. Co-applicants, Drs Andrew Chantry, John Snowden and Michelle Lawson were recently awarded a £1.1 million pound Specialist Program Grant from LLR to drive their research forward. This Specialist Programme Grant, entitled ‘Novel Targets and Therapeutic Combinations in Myeloma’ focuses on the issues outlined in section 3.2.

Very recently, research activity has been supported by the appointment of a 0.5 FT Res Nurse, based within the CRF and funded by RCF.

Translational research

Two key challenges faced by clinicians treating patients with myeloma are firstly, the currently inadequate treatment of the devastating osteolytic bone disease associated with myeloma and secondly, our current inability to totally eliminate disease in spite of the fact that we are usually able to substantially debulk disease frequently achieving complete response or very good partial response according to the International Myeloma Working Group Response Criteria. In these proposed studies, we will combine established anti-resorptive therapies and novel bone anabolic therapies in an attempt to improve on single agent therapy alone. We will seek to exploit and augment the potential anti-tumour effect of bone modulating agents. Finally, we will try to identify the quiescent, residual myeloma progenitor cell population, identify novel targets and attempt complete eradication.

In conjunction with the Extracorporeal Photopheresis service in Rotherham we are conducting translational research into graft versus host disease following allogeneic stem cell transplantation. We are analysing biomarkers of graft versus host to identify prognostic features and guide therapy.

Late Effects and Cancer Survivorship

Late Effects and Cancer Survivorship research remains a vital research priority in collaboration with colleagues in Oncology and Endocrinology and supported by grant funding from NCRI (CTAAC), Myeloma UK, Macmillan, Kay Kendall Leukaemia Fund and local charities. The Phoenix Project – Surviving Cancer is seeking to develop a holistic package of care for survivors of blood cancers.

Supportive care research

Supportive care research has been performed in collaboration with colleagues in Palliative Medicine and Academic Radiology and funded by industry and local charities. Health Services research and audit of ambulatory care models of care and integrated diagnostics in collaboration with ScHARR funded via a SHINE Innovation Award from the Healthcare Foundation and local charitable funds has taken place.

Clinical trials

Further development of the haemato-oncology clinical trials portfolio in collaboration with NCRI and industry, especially phase I and II as well as expansion of phase III studies proceeds. We currently have 18 Clinical Trials running covering all aspects of Haemato-oncology with a further 9 trials opening soon. We have recently joined the MyelomaUK Clinical Network of Clinical Trials fast tracking early phase clinical trials using novel agents for patients with myeloma.

Development of Stem Cell Transplantation in Autoimmune Diseases portfolio in collaboration with the European Blood and Marrow Transplant (EBMT) group, including involvement phase II and III multinational trials in SLE, MS and type 1 diabetes, supported by appropriate local and national grant funding (Prof Snowden as potential national P.I., with Dr Akil, Dr Sharrack and Professor Heller as local co-investigators).

Health service research

Innovative approaches to integrated diagnosis and delivery of ambulatory care to patients undergoing intensive chemotherapy and stem cell transplant in conjunction with ScHARR supported by appropriate local and national grant funding (Prof Snowden and Dr Wright).

Pathogenesis/translational studies.

Funding is currently available until 2014 by the NCI (USA) to identify genetic epidemiological risk variants for chronic lymphocytic leukaemia in collaboration with Dr Angie Cox, University of Sheffield, and Prof. Nicola Camp, University of Utah. The plan is to extend these studies into multiple myeloma (Dr Wright, Prof Snowden and Dr Chantry).