Pancreatic Cancer: Research

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered at on 20 May 2024.

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Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers Conservative, Chipping Barnet

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding her Department has allocated to pancreatic cancer research in each of the last five years.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

Research is crucial in tackling cancer, which is why the Department invests £1.3 billion per year in health research through the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR). The NIHR's research expenditure for all cancers was £121.8 million in 2022/23, and the NIHR spends more on cancer than any other disease group.

The NIHR funded nine research projects on pancreatic cancer since 2018/19, with a committed funding value of £4.3 million.

The following table shows NIHR spending on pancreatic cancer research for the period April 2018 to March 2023, based on contracted funding over this period, correct as of 29 April 2024:

Year commenced

Pancreatic cancer research awards actual spending












£2.3 million

In addition, NIHR Biomedical Research Centres and NIHR Clinical Research Facilities spent a further £6.5 million between 2018/19 and 2022/23 supporting an annual portfolio of around 85 early clinical studies in pancreatic cancer.

The NIHR also supports delivery in the health and care system of research into pancreatic cancer, funded by research funding partners in the charity and public sectors. Since 2018/19 the NIHR supported 73 clinical research studies through the Clinical Research Network.

The NIHR funds research in response to proposals received from scientists rather than allocating funding to specific disease areas. The NIHR welcomes funding applications for research into any aspect of human health, including pancreatic cancer. It is not usual practice to ring-fence funds for particular topics or conditions. Applications are subject to peer review and judged in open competition, with awards being made on the basis of the importance of the topic to patients and health and care services, value for money and scientific quality.

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