Why is bowel cancer in young Australians increasing?

Published Joseph Green on Mon, 06/03/2024 - 14:15

Monday Lunch Live

3 June 2024

In this webinar, A/Prof Dan Buchanan presents on the alarming rise of colorectal cancer in Australians under the age of 50 years. He shares the latest information on bowel cancer in Australia, and his research on the causes of young-onset bowel cancer.

Young-onset colorectal cancer (bowel cancer) is now the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in Australians under the age of 50 years. The number of people diagnosed with young-onset colorectal cancer is increasing in Australia, but the questions remains, why? A/Prof Dan Buchanan's research uses different approaches to understand the cause of young-onset colorectal cancer, including the role of gut bacteria.


Dr Cori Behrenbruch
Colorectal Surgeon, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

Dr Behrenbruch is a member of the Colorectal Surgical Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSSANZ). She completed her general surgical training in 2015 through St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne and subsequently a PhD through the University of Melbourne and Peter Mac, focusing on chemotherapy resistance in metastatic colorectal cancer. Dr Behrenbruch has undertaken two years of sub-specialty colorectal training. The first year was a high-volume laparoscopic fellowship at Box Hill Hospital and the second year at St Mark’s Hospital in London, where she trained in robotic surgery, advanced colorectal cancer and complex inflammatory bowel disease. She is also passionate about cancer survivorship and ensuring patients have a good quality of life after cancer treatment.

A/Prof Dan Buchanan

Head of the Colorectal Oncogenomics Group, Department of Clinical Pathology and Centre for Cancer Research, the University of Melbourne

A/Prof Buchanan leads a multi-disciplinary research program focused on understanding the causes of colorectal cancer to inform precision prevention and early detection. The ANGELS and Genetics of Colonic Polyposis Studies use genomics to identify the aetiology of young-onset colorectal cancer, and idiopathic polyposis cases that remain a significant clinical challenge.

He is a senior member of the leading international colorectal cancer studies, the Colon Cancer Family Registry (CCFR), and the Genetic Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium (GECCO). A/Prof Buchanan is also an NHMRC Emerging Leadership Investigator Fellow and a University of Melbourne Dame Kate Campbell Fellow. He holds an honorary appointment within the Genomic Medicine and Familial Cancer Centre at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, contributing to a multidisciplinary approach to the diagnosis and risk management of hereditary cancer and colonic polyposis. He is committed to the translation of research into clinical practice, as a member of the National eviQ Cancer Genetics Reference Committee. integration of irAE risk prediction into clinical cancer services.

Course Details

Course type
60 mins
Curriculum Area
Research (incl. Clinical Trials)
Early to mid career researcher
Senior researcher / scientist
Consumer / patient / carer
Monday Lunch Live

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