Common disease genetics

Manchester has a large programme of work underway to identify genetic variants relevant to common diseases. Genome wide association studies are undertaken by the Centre for Integrated Genomic Medical Research (CIGMR) and the Arthritis Research UK Epidemiology Unit, which has already had major successes, including the identification of important variants predisposing to rheumatoid arthritis.

In Genetic Medicine, through candidate gene studies, our focus has been on the identification of gene variants relevant to Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

Cancer genetics

Manchester has international expertise for its work to understand the genetic basis of breast, ovarian and colorectal cancer. Prof Gareth Evans is an international expert in cancer genetics. He is an NIHR Senior Investigator leading programmes of research including a study of 60,000 women on breast cancer prevention. The PROCAS study is considering ways to make breast cancer screening more effective using genetic information.

Dr Webb works in the Centre for Molecular Medicine on protein modelling disruption secondary to mutations in the BRCA genes relevant to familial breast cancer.

Professor Evans also has a major research programme funded by Cancer Research UK (CRUK) to understand the pathogenesis of nerve tumours called schwannomas in both neurofibromatosis type 2 and schwannomatosis. With Prof Evans, Dr Susan Huson has a research programme to improve management and treatment of patients with nurofibromatosis type 1.

For further information, see: Genesis Cancer Prevention Centre

Principal investigator

Name Job title Email address
Gareth Evans Honorary Professor
Susan Huson Honorary Senior Lecturer
Tao Wang

Senior Lecturer in Medical Genetics
Michelle Webb Lecturer in Medical Genetics


Dr Newman leads a programme of pharmacogenetic research, he works with Clinicians at the Christie Hospital to develop genetic tests for clinical use to ensure patients get safe and effective cancer treatment. He has an interest in ovarian hyperstimulation in in vitro fertilisation treatment and is undertaking research to find the causes of this serious drug reaction.

Principal Investigator

Dr William Newman
Senior Lecturer in Genetic Medicine