The DNA revolution: Can we predict people's chance of getting cancer? Should we?

7.00pm to 8.30pm, Tuesday 11 October

The Theatre

The Royal Institution of Great Britain GB United Kingdom W1S 4BS 21 Albemarle Street London

This event has already taken place

  • DNA sequences

    Advances in DNA sequencing mean cancer can be diagnosed and treated quicker and more effectively.

    Credit: Shaury Nash via Flickr


Standard £14


Concession £10


Discounts for Members

Event description

Genetic tests for cancer susceptibility are becoming more widely available, but how these are interpreted and how the information is shared can have a huge impact on individuals, their families and the health service.

Writer and broadcaster Vivienne Parry OBE will chair a panel of experts including Shirley Hodgson, Rebecca Kristeleit, Nazneen Rahman CBE and Mark Taylor. They will discuss DNA tests currently available and their implications for screening, prevention and treatment of cancer; how personal genetic data should be interpreted and shared with patients and others; and the effect this information could have. How accurate might future personal and tumour testing be? Could these techniques eventually lead to cancer being eradicated?

This event is presented in partnership with the Royal Society of Biology, the Biochemical Society and Cancer Research UK for Biology Week 2016. Please note that ticket income will be used to cover the cost of the event and is not a donation to the organisations involved.

About the speakers

Vivienne Parry is a scientist by training and hosts medical programmes for Radio 4, writes widely on health, presents films, facilitates many high level conferences and debates and trains young researchers. She also has a part time role as head of engagement at Genomics England

Shirley Hodgson is a Professor of Cancer Genetics at St George’s University of London. She is particularly interested in genetic cancer susceptibility, colorectal and breast cancers. She aims to identify new genetic endocrine tumour susceptibility genes and optimise management protocols for these individuals.

Rebecca Kristeleit is a clinical senior lecturer and consultant medical oncologist at UCL/UCLH, where she is focused on clinical trials for gynaecological cancer treatments.

Nazneen Rahman is Head of the Division of Genetics and Epidemiology at The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), London, Head of the Cancer Genetics Clinical Unit at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust and Director of the TGLclinical gene testing laboratory at the ICR. She has a strong focus on cancer predisposition genes, in which she is an internationally-recognised expert and has discovered many such genes during her career, particularly for breast, ovarian and childhood cancers.

Mark Taylor is Deputy Director of the Sheffield Institute of Biotechnology Law and Ethics (SIBLE) and a Senior Lecturer in the School of Law, University of Sheffield. He specialises in health information law, privacy, and legal and ethical conceptions of the public interest. He is a member of the Ethics, Regulation & Public Involvement Committee (ERPIC) for the Medical Research Council, and he is on the ethics advisory committee of Genomics England.

Become a member

Benefit from free and better than half-price tickets, special offers and access to the CHRISTMAS LECTURES ticket ballot.

Join todayGo