Prof Matthew Seymour

Chair of Gastrointestinal Cancer Medicine & Hon. Consultant Medical Oncologist; Director of NCRN (NIHR Cancer Research Network); Clinical Research Director of NCRI (the National Cancer Research Institute).

Summary: I am involved in large-scale clinical trials along with laboratory research to find better treatments, to select the treatment most likely to help each individual patient.

Location: St James’s Institute of Oncology, Bexley Wing, L4

Teaching Commitments: Clinical Teaching – Oncology Lectures – intercalated BSc National and International – NCRI; NCRN; ESMO faculty


Matt Seymour is a Medical Oncologist specialising in gastrointestinal tract cancer. After training at Cambridge, the London, Stoke-on-Trent, St Bart’s and the Royal Marsden hospitals, he moved to Leeds in 1995.
His personal research interests are improving outcomes and reducing adverse impacts during drug therapy for patients with GI tract cancer, through optimising treatment regimens, individualised treatment selection using molecular biomarkers, and introduction of novel therapies. He has led several national phase III clinical trials and the translational research arising from them. This includes translational studies to identify which patients do or do not benefit from specific cytotoxic drugs and anti-EGFR monoclonal antibodies.

Another area of research addresses the problem of frail and elderly patients being under-represented in oncology trials, but then treated using the evidence derived from those same trials. His ‘FOCUS2’ trial was the first large RCT designed specifically for frail and elderly patients with advanced colorectal cancer, and is now being followed by a large RCT, ‘GO2’ for frail elderly patients with upper GI cancer.

He was the first regional Clinical Lead for the NCRN in Yorkshire, and is now the national Director of NCRN and Clinical Research Director for NCRI. In these roles he oversees the national portfolio of over 600 clinical cancer studies, with more than 50,000 participants each year. He is also joint founder of the International Rare Cancer Initiative (IRCI), promoting international cooperation to conduct research for rare cancers.