I definitely hope so! I hope that all of the work that I do will make a little contribution towards saving lives.
There is one project that I worked on a couple of years ago where I was part of a team of scientists (probably over 100 of us altogether) writing guidelines for the best ways to run bowel cancer screening programmes. These guidelines will be used in countries all over Europe and will help to save lots of lives. I only did a little bit of the work on the project, but I think that all of the scientists involved can be really proud about it.
Yes, potentially it could. The work I’m doing now, trying to understand how cells die and how cancer cells avoid dying, could allow us to develop new drugs to target cancer cells, and that could save lives.
On a very long scale, possibly, because I’m working on a new treatment for pancreatic cancer. However, it will take so long, that I can only start the research on it and then leave it to others for the successive steps (clinical trials…)