Oxford Expertise Improving Cancer Care Worldwide

Prof David Kerr CBE FRCP FRCGP FMedSci is Professor of Cancer Medicine based at the Radcliffe Department of Medicine and the Oxford Cancer and Haematology Centre. David studied biochemistry and medicine at the University of Glasgow, he went on to become a clinician scientist, and is an Honorary Professor of Oncology at Sichuan, Suchow, Xiamen, Shanghai and Seoul National Universities. David is head of the Kerr-Cai Group and Kerr and Pezzella Group, and founded the Oxford University spin outs Celleron Therapeutics and Oxford Cancer Biomarkers, in collaboration with his close colleague Prof Nick la Thangue (Department of Oncology). As Health Advisor to two British Prime Ministers he has implemented improvements to national cancer care (e.g. leading the Cancer Services Collaborative and producing a 20 year plan for the future of Scotland’s NHS  in the “Kerr Report”). In addition to facilitating improvements to healthcare quality in the UK, David’s involvement in INDOX and AfrOx and partnership with China Resources Healthcare has resulted in improvements in standards of care, which patients across the globe are able to receive.

David’s own work focuses on researching and delivering new treatments for patients with colorectal cancer through his involvement with clinical trials. In particular, David and his fellow researchers are developing tumour associated biomarkers which allow them to target those patients most in need of post-operative treatment. Furthermore they are looking into germline genetic markers, which identify patients most at risk of serious side effects from chemotherapy, permitting them to tailor the dose of chemotherapy more accurately. Discovering these genetic variants which determine the normal individual risk of developing colorectal cancer will help with the process of screening patients. Some examples of David’s extensive and impactful work are the Quasar Trials (QUASAR 1 & QUASAR 2), both large randomised trials, introducing improved patient care into NHS standard practice.

Some of David’s collaborators are Prof Rachel Kerr and Prof Nick la Thangue (Department of Oncology), Prof Francesco Pezzella (Radcliffe Department of Medicine), Prof Ian Tomlinson (University of Birmingham), and Prof Håvard Danielsen (University of Oslo).

One of David’s many sources of funding is CRUK.