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Leukaemia Busters


Our Scientific Director Dr David Flavell explains about the life saving research work being conducted by Leukaemia Busters scientists and doctors

Leukaemia Busters’ Mission is to fund and conduct research focused on discovering and developing novel antibody-based treatments for patients with leukaemia and other related blood cancers.

Our vision is a world in which leukaemia is safely, quickly and completely cured in every patient.

In recent years, antibody and other treatments that are highly selective at killing cancer cells, but which leave normal cells untouched in the patient’s body, have proven highly effective where chemotherapy has failed.

Leukaemia Busters was founded in 1989 by three sets of parents, Wendy & Robert Sutcliffe, Julie & Paul Daws and David and Bee Flavell, whose children at that time were undergoing treatment at Southampton General Hospital for leukaemia or lymphoma. One of these sets of parents, David & Bee Flavell, were already research scientists working on developing monoclonal antibodies for the diagnosis of leukaemia and lymphoma in their laboratories at Southampton General Hospital and it was their vision to take those antibodies and use them for the targeted treatment of the very disease afflicting their only child, Simon.

So Leukaemia Busters was born from an urgent medical need and a shared common vision in which leukaemia and lymphoma could be easily and effectively treated by antibodies without the nasty and potentially life threatening side effects of conventional chemotherapy that the founding parent’s children had to endure.

Today that dream has started to turn to reality with antibody-based drugs now in common clinical use for a variety of cancers including lymphoma and leukaemia. Leukaemia Busters is proud to have played a role in this but we recognize that there is still much more research yet to be done to ensure that such antibody treatments are made maximally effective for all types of leukaemia and lymphoma.