Prof Hickey awarded Cancer Council Victoria, 2023 Grant-in-Aid

Pictured:  Herald Sun by Robyn Riley published 27 February 2023 & Professor Martha Hickey photo credit Ponch Hawkes

Professor Martha Hickey is the CIA for the project Salpingectomy with delayed oophorectomy to prevent ovarian cancer (TUBA WISP II) for cancer therapy which has been awarded a Cancer Council Victoria 2023 Grant-in-Aid.

Prof Hickey leads the research team which also includesDr Antonia Jones, Dr David Wrede, Dr Frances Petry, Professor Stephen Fox, Professor Tom Jobling, A/Prof Alison Trainer, Dr Joanne de Hullu.

It is well established that risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO) prevents ovarian cancer. However, research has shown that removing the ovaries prior to natural menopause may affect physical and mental health and increase long-term health risks for conditions such as CVD and dementia.

This research will enable Australia’s participation in an international study to determine whether removing the fallopian tubes alone with delayed oophorectomy is as effective as RRSO in preventing ovarian cancer .

This project builds on two previous studies conducted by this research team: TUBA and WISP, which looked whether the removal of the fallopian tubes only and delaying the removal of the ovaries could improve sexual functional and menopausal systems in patients compared with RSSO.

The findings from this project will directly change global practice in ovarian cancer prevention.

“I am very acutely aware of the impact that surgical menopause has on patients undergoing RRSO. If salpingectomy alone is effective in reducing ovarian cancer risk, this would have a profound impact on the short and long-term health of these patients, who could then avoid surgical menopause.” – Prof Martha Hickey

Cancer Council Victoria’s research grant’s program awarded 11 research teams and 2 postdoctoral researchers in a shared total pool of $3.3 million. The wide-ranging project funded all have the potential to significantly impact how we prevent, diagnose, treat and support people with cancer.

Link to story which appeared in the Herald Sun by Robyn Riley published Tuesday 27 February 2023