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Forging new links with China

16 February 2017

Professor Nora de Leeuw and Professor Erwei Song signing memorandum of understanding

Cardiff University has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Sun Yat-sen University that will see the two institutions working together in the field of breast cancer research.

The MoU was signed by Professor Nora de Leeuw, Pro Vice-Chancellor, International and Europe, from Cardiff University and Professor Erwei Song from the Sun Yet-sen Memorial Hospital, during a government delegation to China to promote Sino-UK links in bio-medical sciences.

Professor Nora de Leeuw, Cardiff University Pro Vice-Chancellor, International and Europe, said: “It’s a privilege to sign this MoU on behalf of Cardiff University..."

"We look forward to working with Sun Yat-sen University to better understand different forms of breast cancer and develop new and earlier diagnosis and treatments.”

The MOU includes collaborative research in the areas of:

  • Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) This aggressive type of breast cancer (about 15-20% of all breast cancers) is difficult to treat, as it does not respond to hormonal therapies or to newer biological therapies. Both Cardiff University and Sun Yat-sen University have a strong track record in both laboratory and clinical breast cancer research, making them ideal research partners in the search for the underlying molecular basis of this group of tumours and the design/testing of novel therapies which can improve survival.
  • Novel, targeted anti-cancer drugs directed against metastatic breast cancer Cardiff University and Sun Yat-sen University have a shared interest in the identification and exploitation of novel targets for systemic anti-cancer therapy. These mutual interests offer clear potential for collaborative development and testing of novel anti-cancer drugs, particularly in metastatic breast cancer.
  • Clinical trials Sun Yat-sen University has one of the largest breast cancer teams and best clinical facilities in China, in terms of number of patients, hospital beds, clinical service and tumour bio-banking. Cardiff can offer its leading expertise in the design and conduct of clinical trials, through the College of Biomedical and Life Science’s Centre for Trials Research and through the involvement of its academic clinicians.  Exchange visits between the two Universities will promote the exchange of expertise in designing innovative, world-leading clinical trials which could benefit from joint recruitment and bio-specimen collection in both countries.

Cardiff University has a long-standing relationship with China, with 50 formal academic links and strategic partnership agreements with universities across the country for both research collaboration and student exchange.

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