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Science and Industry Museum Launches Cancer Exhibition

Skellon Studio and Seeing Things

The Science and Industry Museum in Manchester has announced the opening of a new exhibition that will explore various aspects of the transformational nature of cancer care from October. The museum, which has been part of the Science Museum Group since 2012 will host the exhibition, named, ‘Cancer Revolution: Science, Innovation and Hope’ from October 22nd through to next spring. The exhibition will then shift to the National Science Museum in Kensington, London from some point in the summer of 2022. Supported by Cancer Research UK, the temporary show will offer many insights into the revolution in science that has been changing the way cancer is treated around the world.

Skellon Studio and Seeing Things

At the moment, it is estimated that one in two people will obtain a diagnosis of cancer at some point in their lifetime. What Cancer Revolution aims to do is to explain how the disease is now understood by medical scientists and the various techniques that are at the disposal of clinicians now for treating it. The exhibition will delve into the history of cancer treatments, discuss present-day therapies and also look into the future of how cancer might be prevented, diagnosed and treated. According to the Science Museum Group, this will be explained to members of the public with key artefacts, medical objects, stories, information about current research, interactive installations, video films, still photography and a raft of other exhibits.

Advanced Treatments

In a statement, the Science Museum Group said the exhibition would feature 125 objects plus dozens of personal stories that have been gathered from clinicians and cancer patients. The idea is to provide personalised accounts of how cancer has been treated over the last few years, with an emphasis being placed on the use of innovative technologies, especially where they are being utilised to detect the disease at earlier stages than used to be the case.

According to Katie Dabin, the exhibition’s lead curator, there are advances in cancer survival rates that the public should be more aware of. “Despite the progress that has been made, there are still important questions to face up to,” she said. Dabin went on to add that her team was ‘immensely proud’ of the show which would ‘bring to life’ the awe-inspiring story of how much progress with cancer treatment has been made for the very first time in a museum context.

Skellon Studio and Seeing Things

The show is not just about what has been achieved in the name of medical science but poses some of the questions that are still unanswered about cancer, according to the curator. For example, Dabin said the exhibition would examine the – as yet unknown – reasons why certain treatments seem to stop working. Another unknown factor in some cancer treatment is why the disease comes back in some cases but others make a full recovery. In the end, the exhibition will ask one of the most serious questions of all: how can we help more people who are living with cancer to enjoy better and longer lives?

Diverse Displays

One of the artefacts on show in the exhibition will be the first malignant bone tumour to be identified from the fossil remains of a dinosaur. This will be the first time this item has been displayed in a UK museum in any context. The show will also feature some of the latest and most high-tech treatments that are changing the way cancer care is offered nowadays. This includes the Cytosponge and Galleri cancer test, a diagnosis methodology that is being trialled by the NHS at the moment.

Skellon Studio and Seeing Things

Exhibition attendees will also be able to find out more about what life is like inside a chemotherapy treatment day unit. This is because an immersive audio soundscape of just such a unit has been recorded for visitors to listen to. Among the interactive digital exhibits is one that will help the public to better understand the basic between cancerous cells and normal ones. Michelle Mitchell, Cancer Research UK’s chief executive, said that the show would demonstrate the ‘transformative steps’ being taken in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer today.

About the author – Manuel Charr

Manuel Charr is a journalist working in the arts and cultural sectors. With a background in marketing, Manuel is drawn to arts organizations which are prepared to try inventive ways to reach new audiences.

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