Veterinary oncology is the subspecialty of veterinary medicine dealing with cancer diagnosis and treatment in animals. Companion animals such as dogs and cats suffer from many of the same types of cancer as humans and cancer is a major cause of death in pet animals.
Fitzpatrick Referrals Oncology and Soft Tissue is a large purpose-built centre being built on the Surrey Research Park which opened in Sept 2015. The vision and goal of the centre is to provide an environment of cutting-edge cancer care for animals, along with promoting and conducting education and clinical research, predominantly on oncologic projects with translational and comparative benefit.
The centre has dedicated veterinary surgical and medical oncologists, and a vault for a linear accelerator is currently has been constructed (funding for a linear accelerator is currently underway). All patients are family-owned animals (pets) and treatments will be funded privately, or by pet insurance when appropriate, with incentives for clinical trial participation when available and relevant.
The Clinical Director of the centre is Professor Nick Bacon, who also holds a part-time chair in Surgical Oncology at the University of Surrey. Nick moved to Surrey at the end of 2014, originally from Cambridge University, then Colorado State University, and finally the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, where he worked for nine years, the last five of which he was Head of Oncology.
The current other team members include Dr Laurent Findji and Dr Jonathan Bray, board-certified small animal surgeons, Dr Kelvin Kow, a board-certified medical oncologist, and Dr Gerard McLauchlan, a board-certified internal medic who oversees the Interventional Radiology program.
The use of complementary and alternative therapies in dogs and cats with cancer in the UK (client-based Masters questionnaire to establish base-line data on use of alternative therapies in pet population with cancer in the UK, prevalence, sources of information, perceived or actual veterinary support, reasoning behind owner decision-making). Study completed, and abstract accepted for presentation at the British Small Animal Veterinary Association Congress 2017.
Field trial for novel vessel sealing device for human market. Trialled in dogs and cats with naturally-occurring cancer undergoing surgical procedures. Co-ordinated patients with Ethicon (Minneapolis). All data collected and trial completed.
Projects in progress, translational (CDA signed on behalf of Fitzpatrick Referrals Ltd, 2015)
- Tumour chemosensitivity assays (ongoing)
- Chemotherapy delivery technology (ongoing)
- Creation of patient database and diagnostic coding for over 1,300 cats and dogs with spontaneous cancers (starting Spring 2017).
Surrey Cancer Research Institute Veterinary Oncology Members
Professor Nick Bacon
Dr Laurent Findji
Equipment & Resources
- -80 freezer for dedicated veterinary tumour archive
- 160 slice Toshiba CT scanner
- Vault designed and constructed for Varian Lin Ac
- 4 theatres including one dedicated for minimally invasive surgery / interventional techniques
- Chemotherapy hood
- On-site Clinical Skills teaching laboratory (available for hire), including six stations equipped with Storz towers, Ethicon sealing devices and surgical lights