The NIHR funds and supports world-class experts in the field of cancer. In addition, our experts in the NIHR Clinical Research Network (National Specialty Leads) can advise on delivering your cancer study in the NHS. Due to its size and complexity, we have appointed six National Specialty Leads for cancer, each of whom is responsible for a key cross-cutting research theme.
Professor Richard Shaw is the NIHR Clinical Research Network National Specialty Lead for Surgical Oncology.
Richard graduated in Bristol and Glasgow from primary degrees in dentistry and medicine. After surgical training in Glasgow, Richard moved to Liverpool in 2001 to undertake higher training in OMFS and subsequently a head & neck oncology fellowship. Integrated within this clinical training, Richard completed his thesis as a RCSEng Research Fellow, as well as DoH Genetics in Healthcare Fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Centre, USA.
Richard was appointed to Liverpool University and Aintree in 2007, gaining his personal chair in 2012. Richard co-chairs the Mersey Head & Neck Ocnology Research Group (MHNORG), an expanding and vibrant multidisciplinary collaboration of clinicians and scientists committed to improving understanding and treatment of malignancies of the mouth, throat and larynx.
Following several senior roles in the NCRI Clinical Studies Groups, Richard was appointed as an associate director of CRN (Cancer) with specific remit for advancing surgical oncology trials and the role of surgeons in the national cancer portfolio.
Dr Amos Burke is the NIHR Clinical Research Network National Specialty Lead for Children and Young People’s Cancer.
He is currently leading a national initiative to improve the availability of and recruitment to trials for Teenagers and Young Adults. Dr Burke is a childhood cancer specialist working at Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Addenbrooke's Hospital where he has worked since 2004 providing a service for children in the East of England and where he has developed and leads the pioneering Brainbow rehabilitation service for children with brain tumours. He is also an expert in the field of childhood lymphoma and is a member of the National Cancer Research Institute Lymphoma Clinical Studies Group and chairs its paediatric Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma subgroup.
Dr Burke trained in Edinburgh, completing paediatric training in the Midlands, and South west. He undertook a PhD in Childhood Leukaemia in Bristol before appointment as a Consultant in Cambridge. He remains an active researcher in cancer biology of lymphomas as well as in clinical trials for which he is a Chief Investigator.
Professor Sarah Danson has been NIHR National Speciality Lead for Cancer: Early Phase Trials since January 2017 and in this role aims to improve equity of access to early phase trials.
Professor Danson is a Medical Oncologist specialising in the treatment of melanoma, lung cancer and the early clinical assessment of new anticancer agents. Professor Danson was a Specialist Registrar in Medical Oncology and a Cancer Research UK Clinical Research Fellow in Pharmacology at the Christie Hospital, Manchester before moving to work for Weston Park Hospital and Sheffield University in 2006. Professor Danson was a member of the CR-UK New Agents Committee from 2009-16 and currently sits on the NCRI Skin Cancer Clinical Studies Group and the EORTC Lung Cancer and Melanoma Groups. She has been Sheffield ECMC (Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre) Lead since 2016.
Professor Sam Ahmedzai is the NIHR CRN National Specialty lead for Community-based, Supportive and Palliative Care Research and is Chair of the NCRI Supportive and Palliative Care CSG chair and head of the Academic Unit of Supportive Care in the University of Sheffield. He is a honorary consultant physician in palliative medicine, working in a hospital supportive care team and am lead clinician for supportive and palliative care in the North Trent Cancer Network. Professor Ahmedzai also heads the Sheffield Adult Cancer Survivorship project.
He is editor-in-chief of the Oxford University Press book series on supportive care; the journal ‘Current Opinion in Supportive and Palliative Care‘; the section on supportive and palliative care for ‘BMJ Clinical Evidence‘; and the clinical lead for the NHS Evidence Specialist Collection for Supportive and Palliative Care.
The NIHR Office for Clinical Research Infrastructure (NOCRI) helps public, charity and industry research funders work in partnership with NIHR infrastructure. Find out more about how they can support collaborations in the life sciences industry section of our website.