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Sarah Gooding

Clinician Scientist

The genetics of drug resistance and poor outcomes in multiple myeloma

My research interest is to better understand why the bone marrow cancer multiple myeloma remains incurable, despite novel therapy availability in recent years, and to translate this understanding into better outcomes for our patients.

I joined the Chapman group in 2021 to focus on the interaction between genome instability and poor outcomes in Multiple Myeloma. I have worked in the WIMM since 2013, during my DPhil in the Drakesmith group (HIU) and postdoc in the Vyas group. I am also an honorary consultant specialising in myeloma in Oxford University Hospitals Haematology department. 

While myeloma usually initially responds well to combination treatments of novel agents, such as IMiDs or proteosome inhibitors, and chemotherapy, over time it inevitably develops resistance to the drugs we have available, and becomes more aggressive, meaning it is largely incurable. I work on the genetics of drug resistance, and the clonal competition within a tumour that leads to more difficult-to-treat disease emerging. I am interested in how instability within the cancer genome speeds up this process.

I am also interested in how to better utilise cancer genetic analysis in patient care, both for myeloma patients and more widely, so that the information contained in a cancer genome can be used to direct therapeutic choices and maximise better outcomes for patients.