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Last chance to discover world-first Cancer Revolution exhibition at the Science and Industry Museum

Expert Partner: Cancer Research UK
Principal Sponsor: Pfizer
Major Sponsor: QIAGEN
Supported by Redx Pharma Plc 

There's only one month left to discover the critically acclaimed world-first free exhibition exploring the revolution in science that is transforming cancer care at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, before it closes on 27 March.   

Created by The Science Museum Group, with support from expert partner Cancer Research UK, over 31,000 people from across the UK and beyond have visited Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope. At a key moment in time when one in two of us will be diagnosed with cancer in our lifetime, more of us than ever before are living longer, and better with the disease and beyond. 

Combining more than 100 seldom and never-before seen objects, personal stories, cutting edge treatment and research, brand new art commissions, film, photography and interactive exhibits, the exhibition, created with those with lived experience of cancer and with over 500 partners, participants and contributors from across the globe, has given visitors an unprecedented insight into the past, present and future of how cancer is prevented, detected and treated. Revealing how researchers, clinicians, policy makers and patients are fuelling progress in a powerful expression of shared hope. 

Described by The Telegraph as "Bold and brave" and by visitors as "incredibly moving and uplifting", "stunning and unmissable" with "science, in an understandable form, with relevant human experiences", now is the final chance to experience this powerful exhibition in Manchester, a city known world-wide for its pioneering cancer treatment and research. 

Find out the story of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust’s transformative ‘Manchester Method for radiotherapy’ through never-before-seen objects, discover how virtual reality is being used to study cancer and shape treatments, learn how the groundbreaking Manchester Lung Health Checks from Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) are using mobile screening trucks at supermarkets to detect lung cancer in communities, and join over a thousand other visitors who have contributed their own experiences to a Wall of Hope. 

Other unmissable highlights include the first malignant dinosaur bone tumour to be found, on display for the very first time in the UK. On Wednesday 9 March, visitors also have the chance to attend a special free ticketed museum Late event, A Shared Hope, which will combine art and science to explore the different ways in which cancer can affect our lives, and celebrate the people working to transform cancer care, from scientists and researchers to patients and their families and friends. 

The event includes the first live performance of Innit, love? by acclaimed Mancunian poet Tony Walsh (AKA Longfella), created on behalf of Greater Manchester Cancer to mark World Cancer Day 2021; interactive activities with Cancer Research UK; and cookery demonstrations from Ryan Riley, best-selling author, cook and founder of Life Kitchen, a not-for-profit cookery school for people whose senses of taste and smell have been seriously impacted by cancer treatment related treatment or COVID. There will also be inspiring conversations with actress and singer Victoria Ekanoye, University Professor of Cancer Studies in the Division of Cancer Sciences (The University of Manchester) and Chief Academic Officer at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust Professor Robert Bristow, and Marcella Turner founder and CEO of CanSurviveUK, chaired by award-winning investigative journalist, presenter and director Qasa Alom. 

Sally MacDonald, Director of the Science and Industry Museum said: 

"We have been moved, humbled and blown-away by the incredible feedback visitors are sharing with us. This is a very special exhibition experience on a subject which is resonating strongly."

Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope will run until Sunday 27 March. It is free, but booking is essential (either online or by calling 033 0058 0058). Following its run in Manchester, Cancer Revolution will tour to the Science Museum in London from 25 May to January 2023. 

A Shared Hope late event will take place on 9 March from 19.00. To find out more information and to book free tickets, visit https://www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/a-shared-hope

Exhibition highlights include:

  • Stories of diverse cancer patient experiences gathered through a special Science Museum Group collaborative collecting project show no two experiences are the same. From the beads marking every step on a child’s treatment journey to the wig stand decorated by a daughter, and a garden fork integral to an individual’s recovery, visitors will get to know the individuals behind highly personal items. 
  • On display for the very first time in the UK, the first malignant bone tumour to be identified in a dinosaur fossil, discovered in 2020, will reveal the surprising truth that rather than being a modern disease, cancer has long affected living things including dinosaurs from prehistoric times to the plants that are around us today.
  • Never-before-displayed objects, including a cast for holding in place radium seeds in the treatment of skin cancer of the hand from the 1950s, tell the story of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust’s transformative ‘Manchester Method for radiotherapy’ which originated in Manchester and revolutionised the practice of radiotherapy around the world. 
  • Many of the latest technologies and treatments transforming cancer care including the Cytosponge (swallowed like a pill this is reshaping the early detection of signs of oesophageal cancer) and the Galleri test (which is designed to detect over 50 types of cancer from one blood sample and is currently being trialled by the NHS).
  • 10 pioneering studies featured together for the first time, including the work of the CanBuild Project team who are building tumours from scratch, engineering mini tumours that realistically grow and change like human cancers, with the aim of improving how new treatments are tested and to look for new therapies that target the cells that support tumour growth. 
  • Artworks that provide poignant and contemplative moments, including the premiere of an atmospheric soundscape by renowned artist Katharine Dowson, featuring the voices ten years on of some of the patients included in her accompanying Silent Stories glass radiotherapy mask sculpture art installation,  photography from Nudrat Afza’s Shadow and Light collection which captures her sister’s breast cancer treatment journey on public display for the first time, and a glass sculpture by artist Luke Jerram depicting the Papillomavirus, part of his Glass Microbiology series.
  • Hear what life is like inside a chemotherapy treatment day unit through an immersive audio soundscape recorded at Tameside Macmillan Unit part of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust.
  • Encounter up close the complex make-up of tumours through a three-metre large scale tumour 3D installation created especially for the exhibition.
  • A specially commissioned Hallmarks of Cancer light installation by CLAY Interactive Ltd shows how cancer cells behave.
  • Interactive digital exhibits test visitors' understanding of cancer and put what they are discovering into action, including exploring the differences between cancerous and normal cells, a quiz myth-busting the causes of cancer, and treating a tumour using different therapies.  
  • A live research and dialogue section gives visitors the opportunity to open-up conversations about cancer, sharing their own experiences and the chance to vote for which research area needs the most attention. 

At the Science and Industry Museum, the exhibition is funded by principal sponsor Pfizer and major sponsor QIAGEN, with support from Redx Pharma Plc.

At the Science Museum, the exhibition is funded by principal sponsor Pfizer, with support from Julian Howard.

For more information about the Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope exhibition and to book free tickets to see it at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, visit https://www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/cancer-revolution

Visit the Science Museum website and sign up to their newsletter to be the first to find out when tickets will be available for London. 

NOTES TO EDITORS

For more information, interviews and images please contact Rachel Conway at rachel.conway@scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk or on 0161 696 7785.

FOR REGIONAL MEDIA

Must-see North West highlights:

  • Uncover the story behind the revolutionary ‘Manchester Method for radiotherapy’ through never displayed before objects related to the history of radiotherapy treatment at The Christie hospital, loaned from Manchester University’s Museum of Medicine and Health.
  • Hear what life is like inside a chemotherapy treatment day unit through an immersive audio soundscape recorded at Tameside Macmillan Unit part of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust.
  • Witness the effect of cancer treatment through the poignant large-scale photographic work of Bradford photographer Nudrat Afza’s Shadow and Light, depicting her own sister’s ongoing journey.
  • Be amazed by the story behind pioneering CAR-T cell therapy. Learning about how patients’ immune cells are being collected, retrained in the lab to target cancer and returned to the patient to treat their disease, in a new form of immunotherapy treatment called CAR-T cell therapy. How since 2019, a team of clinicians at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester and Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT), have been treating certain patients with forms of blood cancer with this personalised form of immunotherapy.
  • Learn how the ground-breaking Manchester Lung Health Checks from Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) is using mobile screening trucks at supermarkets to detect lung cancer in deprived communities, and is now being trialled nationally.
  • Discover what the incredible TRACERx study is at the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute. Learn all about how Professor Caroline Dive and her team are developing tests called ‘liquid biopsies’ to hunt cancer cells that have broken free from tumours and are circulating in the blood. Looking for these circulating tumour cells to understand how lung cancer changes as it grows and to predict who might experience cancer coming back, after their tumour has been removed by surgery. 
  • See a specially commissioned graphic and film about Proton Beam therapy at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, the first NHS trust to deliver this cutting-edge high energy radiotherapy treatment, to understand how it works and how it is transforming the experience of radiotherapy for some patients.

LISTINGS

Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope 
22 October 2021 – March 2022 
Science and Industry Museum, Manchester 

https://www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/cancer-revolution 

Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope
May – October 2022
Science Museum, London 

https://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/see-and-do/cancer-revolution-science-innovation-and-hope 

ABOUT THE SCIENCE MUSEUM GROUP

The Science Museum Group is the world’s leading group of science museums, welcoming over five million visitors each year to five sites: the Science Museum in London; the National Railway Museum in York; the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester; the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford; and Locomotion in Shildon.

We share the stories of innovations and people that shaped our world and are transforming the future, constantly reinterpreting our astonishingly diverse collection of 7.3 million items spanning science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine. Standout objects include the record-breaking locomotive Flying Scotsman, Richard Arkwright’s textile machinery, Alan Turing’s Pilot ACE computer and the earliest surviving recording of British television.

Our mission is to inspire futures—igniting curiosity among people of all ages and backgrounds. Each year, our museums attract more than 600,000 visits by education groups, while our touring exhibition programme brings our creativity and scholarship to audiences across the globe. More information can be found at sciencemuseumgroup.org.uk.    

ABOUT CANCER RESEARCH UK

Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research. 

Cancer Research UK’s pioneering work into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer has helped save millions of lives. 

Cancer Research UK has been at the heart of the progress that has already seen survival in the UK double in the last 40 years. 

Today, 2 in 4 people survive their cancer for at least 10 years. Cancer Research UK’s ambition is to accelerate progress so that by 2034, 3 in 4 people will survive their cancer for at least 10 years. 

Cancer Research UK supports research into all aspects of cancer through the work of over 4,000 scientists, doctors and nurses. 

Together with its partners and supporters, Cancer Research UK's vision is to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured. 

For further information about Cancer Research UK's work, please call 0300 123 1022 or visit www.cancerresearchuk.org. Follow on Twitter and Facebook

ABOUT PFIZER: BREAKTHROUGHS THAT CHANGE PATIENTS’ LIVES 

At Pfizer, we apply science and our global resources to bring therapies to people that extend and significantly improve their lives. We strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacture of health care products, including innovative medicines and vaccines. Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time. Consistent with our responsibility as one of the world's premier innovative biopharmaceutical companies, we collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable healthcare around the world. For more than 170 years, we have worked to make a difference for all who rely on us. In the UK, Pfizer has its business headquarters in Surrey and is a major supplier of medicines to the NHS. To learn more about our commitments, please visit us at www.pfizer.co.uk or follow us on Twitter (@Pfizer_UK), Facebook (@PfizerUK) and Instagram (@pfizeruk). 

ABOUT QIAGEN 

QIAGEN N.V., a Netherlands-based holding company, is the leading global provider of Sample to Insight solutions that enable customers to gain valuable molecular insights from samples containing the building blocks of life. Our sample technologies isolate and process DNA, RNA and proteins from blood, tissue and other materials. Assay technologies make these biomolecules visible and ready for analysis. Bioinformatics software and knowledge bases interpret data to report relevant, actionable insights. Automation solutions tie these together in seamless and cost-effective workflows. QIAGEN provides solutions to more than 500,000 customers around the world in Molecular Diagnostics (human healthcare) and Life Sciences (academia, pharma R&D and industrial applications, primarily forensics). As of March 31, 2021, QIAGEN employed approximately 5,700 people in over 35 locations worldwide. Further information can be found at http://www.qiagen.com.

Part of the Science Museum Group