Strengthening colorectal cancer research in Scotland by appointing first surgical research chair

Farhat Din of the Institute of Genetics and Cancer becomes Scotland's first Chair in Surgical Colorectal Cancer Research to tackle the second most common cancer in Scotland.

A leading medical college has teamed up with Bowel Cancer UK to establish Scotland's first-ever Colorectal Cancer Surgical Research Chair in a move that will help drive forward vital research that could save the lives of thousands of people.

The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd) and Bowel Cancer UK have jointly appointed Colorectal Surgeon Miss Farhat Din to support the position for four years.

Research focuses on early detection of diagnoses

Surgery is the most common treatment for bowel cancer and is central to curing the disease, particularly when diagnosed early. In her new role, Professor Din and her team will drive studies and trials aimed at early detection and prevention of colorectal cancer, while developing treatment strategies to help prevent the disease.

A particular focus will be on hereditary and early-onset colorectal cancer. Farhat Din of the University of Edinburgh is a colorectal cancer surgeon whose research focuses on the interaction between obesity, environment, genetics and cancer, with an emphasis on early detection.

Announcing Miss Din's appointment at Symposium Hall in Edinburgh on April 20, members and delegates of the College, along with volunteers and supporters of Bowel Cancer UK, discussed how the appointment of the new Scottish Chair in Surgical Research will help advance bowel cancer research across Scotland and increase opportunities for patients to help shape and participate in the research.

This is a fantastic opportunity to consolidate colorectal cancer research across Scotland and develop new studies that focus on early detection and prevention of bowel cancer. This commitment from Bowel Cancer UK and RCSEd will drive cancer research forward while providing the best possible options to patients. It is an honour to accept this role as Scotland’s first Colorectal Cancer Surgical Research Chair.


Dr Clare McNaught, RCSEd Vice-President and a Consultant General and Colorectal Surgeon, said: “I would like to offer my heartfelt congratulations to Miss Farhat Din on her appointment as Scotland’s first ever Colorectal Cancer Surgical Research Chair. This is an exciting development in the delivery of high-quality surgical clinical research for those diagnosed with bowel cancer.

“We are fully committed to supporting surgical research to deliver the best outcomes for patients and to have jointly supported this crucial investment, where funding had been previously lacking. This partnership with Bowel Cancer UK marks a very important milestone in implementing and leading colorectal surgical trials that could help save the lives of thousands of people across the country.

“The ultimate ambition is to bring hope to the thousands of people who are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year.” 

Miss Din is currently Principal Investigator, Reader and Honorary Consultant Colorectal Surgeon at Edinburgh Cancer Research at the Institute of Genetics and Cancer.

Genevieve Edwards, Chief Executive at Bowel Cancer UK, said: “More than 1,700 people die from bowel cancer every year in Scotland, making it the country’s second biggest cancer killer, but it doesn’t have to be this way. 

“Farhat’s wealth of experience in bowel cancer research focused on early diagnosis, and delivering high quality surgical clinical trials will help to ensure more people in Scotland, and beyond, survive a diagnosis of the disease. Her appointment will have real benefit to bowel cancer patients by advancing new surgical techniques and treatments.”

Related Links

Farhat Din Research Group

Institute of Genetics and Cancer