Paterson Redevelopment Project

Creating a world-leading cancer research facility in the heart of Manchester

Artist's rendition of the new Paterson research facility

We have a unique opportunity to create one of the top cancer research centres in the world, right in the heart of Manchester. This new facility will help to transform patient outcomes through integrated advances in the prevention, early detection and treatment of cancer. Together we can use the power of research to Re-Write the future of cancer.


In 2017, the former Paterson research building in Withington, which housed the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute, suffered a devastating fire. Over 300 scientists and research staff were displaced, and our world-leading research activities suffered a major setback.

But now, working in collaboration with The University of Manchester, Cancer Research UK, and The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, we have a unique opportunity to replace the severely damaged building with a new facility, twice the size of the previous building and filled with state-of-the-art equipment.

Researcher pippetting samples
We want to re-write the future of cancer. As it stands, our successful partnership makes us a global leader in many fields of cancer research, which is a fantastic achievement and one we are very proud of. This building will provide the necessary infrastructure we need to be one of the best comprehensive cancer centres in the world for basic, translational and clinical research within the next 10 years.

Professor Nic Jones

Director of Strategic Initiatives at the MCRC and former Chief Scientist at CRUK

The Building

Our new research facility is being custom built and designed to enable the easy collaboration between hundreds of researchers and clinicians.


The new building will bring together the largest concentration of scientists, doctors and nurses in Europe to collaborate and accelerate progress for cancer patients. It will:

  • INTEGRATE a further 400 staff in addition to the more than 300 scientists and support staff currently displaced to increase the pace of research
  • CO-LOCATE clinical staff with laboratory-based researchers to enable closer collaboration and accelerate the translational and clinical research agendas
  • DEVELOP a world leading centre of excellence for biomarker research
  • INSPIRE the scientific leaders of tomorrow and attract emerging talent with a new postgraduate education centre
  • CONNECT with the local community
  • PROVIDE a collaborative research space to further joint research programmes with other leading research institutes

We envisage a space that will help to attract and retain the world’s best and brightest minds, as well as developing commercial interest from some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies and other industrial partners.


But most importantly, this space will help us to accelerate our research agendas, develop new clinical trials and help improve cancer outcomes and increase survival.

Manchester is such a pioneering city. As a patient, I am delighted about the plans for the new research centre. It will be amazing to have such a first-class facility on our doorstep.

Mike Thorpe

A prostate cancer survivor


More than a century ago, physicists knew how to bend a beam of radiation. But it took engineers, biologists and doctors working together to turn this into the radiotherapy instruments and machines we know today and provide us with one of the most effective ways to treat cancer.


It’s this collaboration that lies at the heart of everything we do, and has proved time and time again to be the key to accelerating discoveries from the laboratory into the clinic.


To tackle cancer head on, we need to bring fresh ideas and new perspectives to the table. This Team Science approach is focused on enabling multi-disciplinary groups to collaborate towards a shared goal – building upon the excellence in basic and discovery science to improve outcomes.


Manchester Can…

In the next five years, Manchester can: “Use your blood sample to understand unique molecular features of your cancer in real-time”

Circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA) is DNA that comes from cancerous cells. ctDNA can be found in the bloodstream and analysed through taking a blood sample.

Clinical trials taking place in Manchester aim to determine the impact of measuring ctDNA in blood samples to improve patient outcomes.

View our ‘Manchester Can: ctDNA’ brochure to explore some of the trials that show Manchester can

Researchers in the lab

Download the 'Manchester Can: ctDNA' brochure (4.3mb, PDF):

Make Your Mark

The world of cancer research is changing – we will rewrite the future of cancer.

Join us to re-write the future of cancer. Visit Cancer Research UK or The University of Manchester to find out how you can get involved.

Re-Write Cancer Logo

Latest News

Our Vision

The MCRC has a vision that by uniting science and driving clinical excellence we will create a future free from the burden of cancer.

Our Impact

At the MCRC, we’re committed to delivering impactful research that influences the scientific and clinical delivery of cancer research.

Driving Cancer Team Science: Our Research Strategy

Cancer is a global challenge and requires a plan built around collaboration and Team Science to beat it.


We know the value of working together, collaboration is built into our ethos, it lies at the heart of our values and is core to our research success.


Navigate back to the About homepage to discover more about the MCRC.