EGA Institute for Women's Health


Gynaecological Cancer Research Centre

On 1st August 2018, the GCRC team moved  to the MRC Clinical Trials Unit, Institute of Clinical Trials & Methodologies, UCL. We are now based at ICTM, 2nd Floor, 90 High Holborn, London.

This Group has its origins in the mid-1980s at The Royal London Medical School where Professor Ian Jacobs set up the first large scale ovarian cancer screening trials in the UK.

It formed the core of the new department set up in 1996 at St Bartholomew’s Hospital following the merger of Bart’s and The Royal London. Professor Usha Menon joined the group in 1996 and went on to be Group Leader in 2000. The group now consists of a multidisciplinary team of medical, nursing, scientific, laboratory and administrative staff who oversee and coordinate large multi-centre trials focused on screening and early detection of ovarian cancer, a multitude of related projects in risk stratification, biomarker discovery and early diagnosis of women’s cancer and studies on delivery of care in the NHS to women with cancer. A key clinical interest is familial gynaecological cancer.

GCRC Staff Photo

Trials / Studies




The overall aim is to reduce mortality and morbidity of women with gynaecological malignancies through screening, early diagnosis and risk prediction. In addition, the group is committed to maximising the research benefits of the large biobanks resulting from the clinical trials such as UKCTOCS. The specific objectives are

Screening and Early Detection

  • Defining the impact of ovarian cancer screening on disease specific mortality in the general population
  • Optimising screening strategies for ovarian cancer in the general and high-risk populations
  • Exploring screening strategies for endometrial cancer in the general and high-risk populations
  • Assessing cost, quality of life and morbidity of ovarian /endometrial cancer screening
  • Discovery and validation of biomarkers for early detection of women’s cancer

Risk Prediction

  • Identifying markers for genetic predisposition to ovarian cancer
  • Validating epidemiological risk factors in ovarian, endometrial and breast cancer
  • Exploring psychosocial influences affecting cancer outcomes
  • Improving familial cancer risk prediction by exploring the role of systematic population based screening for known high-risk dominant gene mutations
  • Development and validation of risk stratification scores that incorporate genetic, epigenetic and epidemiological risk factors in ovarian cancer

Improving outcomes in women’s cancer

  • Exploring the root causes of differences in survival across countries with a similar health care structure
  • Improving time to diagnosis of ovarian cancer through better understanding of symptoms
  • Developing benchmarking standards for gynaecological oncology surgery in the NHS

Maximising research benefits of the clinical trial biobanks

  • Increasing the phenotypic data available in the biobanks by connecting to other national databases such as Cancer and Death registrations, Hospital Episode Statistics and Myocardial Ischaemia National Audit Project
  • Putting in place processes and systems that maximise research access.
  • Setting up secondary research collaborations for biomarker discovery and validation in areas outside the core remit of the group

Further information