In the future, breast screening could be adapted to a woman’s personal risk of developing breast cancer, which could change how regularly women are screened. Dr Jo Waller will investigate the concerns women have about this to ensure these approaches are effective.

Dr Seth Coffelt is investigating how a specific type of white blood cell can help breast cancer to spread throughout the body. His work could lead to new ways to prevent the spread of breast cancer, and ultimately stop people dying from the disease.

Breast cancer that has spread to the brain can be particularly hard to treat and severely affects people’s quality of life. Walk the Walk Fellow Dr Damir Varešlija is looking at how gene switches in breast cancer cells might make them more likely to spread to the brain and hopes to find ways to stop this from happening.

Dr Stephen Robinson would like to test if manipulating friendly gut bacteria can influence the immune system and in turn make it harder for breast cancer to spread around the body and become incurable.

Mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2 can drastically increase a person’s risk of developing breast cancer. Professor Xiaodong Zhang will study how changes in the shape of BRCA proteins can alter their function. This could help us tailor therapies to people with breast cancer.

We need to develop our understanding of how breast cancer spreads around the body if we want to prevent deaths from the disease. Dr Iain Macpherson is studying the role of glutamate in breast cancer and will see if blocking it could prevent secondary breast cancer.