Research, Education & Innovation at St Mark's Hospital
At any one time, we financially supports as many as 30 Research Fellows undertaking projects across the areas of IBD, bowel cancer and other complex bowel diseases; these projects rely on charitable support. Many are working towards a future where personalised medicine can be realised for bowel disease and all of our research has the potential to drive clinical improvements. Due to the growing pressures being experienced by all clinical services, especially in the wake of Covid-19, the research that we support has become more important than ever.
We support educational programmes at St Mark’s Academic Institute which attract 1,200 healthcare professionals from across the UK and overseas annually, although our reach has extended further during Covid-19 through virtual courses. In 2020 our flagship international congress, Frontiers, was delivered as a livestreamed event for the first time, attracting an audience of over 2,500 delegates.
Embracing new technologies: Surgical Robotics Research Programme
In 2017, St Mark’s became one of the first hospitals in the UK to offer robotic colorectal surgery while also researching the technique’s efficacy and training other surgeons. Currently, St Mark’s has 5 robotically trained surgeons and about half of all colorectal resections are performed using robotic surgery.
Cutting-edge research: Tissue Engineering/Bowel Regeneration
This pioneering research has the potential to improve the lives of patients with IBD by generating alternative healthy bowel tissue to replace that lost by disease. This would avoid the need for organ donation because the stem cells used to grow the new bowel would come from the patients themselves. It would also mean that patients could be weaned off parenteral nutrition, an artificial feeding technique. This research offers hope for thousands of patients who have lost large amounts of bowel due to disease or trauma.
Read our Special 185th Anniversary Newsletter here: https://www.stmarkshospitalfoundation.org.uk/about/publications/st-marks-annual-newsletter/