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Lung cancer in never smokers (LCINS): development of a UK national research strategy

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Khan, Sam 
Hatton, Nathaniel 
Tough, Daniel 
Rintoul, Robert C. 
Pepper, Coral 


Introduction: Lung cancer in never smokers (LCINS) accounts for 15% of lung cancers diagnosed in the UK, making it the 8th most common cancer. There are few robust studies specific to the LCINS population making data surrounding the incidence and mortality of LCINS incomplete, leaving many gaps in our understanding of the needs of this population. Methods: To address a lack of research in this important area, the UK National Cancer Research Institute Lung Study Group (NCRI-LSG) undertook a national survey and hosted a research strategy day to define key research priorities. A wide cross section of stakeholders, including patient advocates, the charitable sector, basic and translational researchers, and multi-disciplinary healthcare professionals contributed highlighting their research priorities. Results: One-hundred twenty-seven surveys were completed (52 by patients/patient advocates) prior to the strategy day. These identified themes for expert review presentations and subsequent workshop discussions at the national research strategy day, which registered 190 attendees (50 patients/patient advocates). The four key themes that emerged to form the basis of a research strategy for LCINS are (1) Raising awareness, (2) Risk assessment and early detection, (3) Disease biology, (4) Living with and beyond. Conclusion: This paper summarises current evidence and important gaps in our knowledge related to LCINS. We present recommendations for a national research strategy aimed at improving outcomes for patients.


Acknowledgements: The authors would like to acknowledge the others who contributed presentations to the workshop—Martin Foster, Stephen Duffy, Serena Nik-Zainal, Sanjay Popat, Mary O’Brien and Fiona Blackhall. We would also like to thank Anna Fry who helped organise and guide the authors while writing the paper.


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Nature Publishing Group UK