Our research

Established in 2020 and funded by Mesothelioma UK, the Mesothelioma UK Research Centre - Sheffield conducts a portfolio of robust and rigorous research with a reputation for excellence nationally and internationally.


Core objectives

  • Conduct robust and rigorous research with a reputation for excellence nationally and internationally that is of benefit to the care of people diagnosed with mesothelioma and their families,
  • Produce research outputs from the outset that demonstrate the success of the Research Centre and facilitate application of findings.
  • Ensure the research is disseminated rigorously to enable practice, patients and healthcare professionals remain informed and receive maximum benefit from any evidence generated between Mesothelioma UK and the Mesothelioma UK Research Centre.
  • Develop and maintain the infrastructure and systems necessary to ensure the good governance and efficient running of the Research Centre.
  • Develop research capacity to inform mesothelioma policy and practice and develop opportunities for future academic and clinical academic workforce related to mesothelioma.
  • Generate a clear pathway to impact that improves patient experience.

Current Projects

Impact of Covid-19

This research aims to monitor the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the experiences of patients with mesothelioma, their carers and the specialist/ advanced practice nurses who care for them. Surveys conducted during the early stages of the pandemic have now been analysed and published.

This research suggests that patients with mesothelioma and their carers have been disproportionately affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in various ways. 

A further collaborative study with Mesothelioma UK and Lung Cancer Nursing UK is now underway to explore the impact of the later stages of the Covid-19 pandemic on the nursing workforce.

A survey seeking the views of lung cancer and mesothelioma specialist/ advanced practice nurses is NOW LIVE and can be found here. Please consider completing our short survey if you are a specialist/advanced practice nurse in lung cancer or mesothelioma.

Research Prioritisation Exercise (RPE)

The aim of this exercise is to identify unanswered questions about the mesothelioma patient and carer experience, to identify research areas of most importance. 

The exercise comprises three stages:

  • Evidence synthesis: to explore what is already known and where the gaps in knowledge are.
  • Survey: mesothelioma patients, carers and professionals are invited to have their say about important topic areas for future research.
  • Ranking: exercises are undertaken by a project steering group, individuals with experience and expertise in the field of mesothelioma, to reach consensus regarding the most important research topics.

A list of research priorities for mesothelioma patient and carer experience research will be published in late 2021. 

MiMES (Military Mesothelioma Experience Study)

This research is part of a larger project run by Mesothelioma UK that aims to improve the service and care provision to people who have served in the armed forces with mesothelioma.

Our 2021 paper from the European Journal of Oncology Nursing on the experiences of male military veterans with mesothelioma can be accessed here.

A full report of the study can be accessed here. 

Gendered Experience of Mesothelioma Study (GEMS)

The GEMS study aims to explore the experiences of men and women with mesothelioma, their family carers as well as the various staff they meet. We will seek to understand why any differences that are identified occur. Our goal is to establish with participants how services should best be delivered to be accessible and acceptable to both men and women.

A full report can be accessed here. Our 2021 paper on gender and the experience of mesothelioma, published in the European Journal of Oncology Nursing, can be accessed here.

We have recently published a short animation on gender differences in experiences of mesothelioma to help support professionals 


Palliative care and the role of Clinical Nurse Specialists

The aim of this study is to explore the palliative care needs of patients with mesothelioma, and explore the role of  Mesothelioma UK clinical nurse specialists in providing care for patients with mesothelioma and their families.

The psychological effects of mesothelioma in the UK military context

This PhD study, led by Virginia Sherborne, explores how carers of UK military veterans with mesothelioma experience the psychological effects of the disease.

The Experience of Long-term Survival in People Affected by Pleural Mesothelioma and Their Carers

This study aims to gain an in-depth understanding of the experience of living as a long-term survivor (three or more years) of pleural mesothelioma from the perspective of the people diagnosed with the condition and their main carer, such as their spouse or partner, son, daughter, or close friend. 

For more information about the study, please contact the study Principle Investigator Dr Matthew Johnson (matthew.johnson@sheffield.ac.uk) or Dr Peter Allmark (p.allmark@sheffield.ac.uk).


Past Projects

Mesothelioma Asbestos Guidelines Study (MAGS)

This study aimed to explore the experiences of presentation, diagnosis, treatment and care for health care workers with mesothelioma. The study developed a critical account of that experience and developed recommendations for increasing awareness about the dangers of asbestos amongst health care workers.


MesoTRAP was a pilot clinical trial and feasibility study comparing video-assisted thoracoscopic partial pleurectomy/decortication with indwelling pleural catheter in patients with trapped lung due to malignant pleural mesothelioma designed to address recruitment and randomisation uncertainties and sample size requirements for a Phase III trial. The protocol was published in BMJ Open Respiratory Research and can be viewed here.

Zoledronic acid (ZA) in the management of mesothelioma: qualitative nested study (Zol-A Trial)

A double-blind randomised controlled feasibility study was conducted to assess the recruitment and acceptability of ZA/placebo alongside chemotherapy in malignant pleural mesothelioma. A qualitative nested study was included in the study and was undertaken by our team.

MARS 2: The Mesothelioma and Radical Surgery trial 2: Patient experience sub study

The MARS 2 study sought to compare extended pleurectomy decortications (EPD) surgery with no surgery in people receiving standard chemotherapy for malignant pleural mesothelioma. The qualitative sub-study aimed to generate insights into the patient experience of recruitment, consent and randomisation as well as the experience of the MARS 2 interventions. Our findings suggest that patients perceived and derived benefits from taking part in the trial but experienced some negative consequences, such as increased uncertainty amplified by multiple care providers and unclear transition arrangements after the trial.

RADIO Meso (Receiving a diagnosis of mesothelioma)

The project aimed to identify ways to improve the patient and family carer experience of receiving a diagnosis of mesothelioma. Following analysis the researchers identified key themes and developed ‘Ten Top Tips’ for communicating a mesothelioma diagnosis. The study findings were published in 2019 in BMJ Open Respiratory Research.



Ejegi-Memeh S, Robertson S, Taylor B, Tod A. Gender and the experiences of living with mesothelioma: A thematic analysis. European Journal of Oncology Nursing. Vol 52, June 2021. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejon.2021.101966

Harrison M, Gardiner C, Taylor B, Ejegi-Memeh S, Darlison L. Understanding the palliative care needs and experiences of people with mesothelioma and their family carers: An integrative systematic review. Palliative Medicine. April 2021. doi:10.1177/02692163211007379

Taylor B, Tod A, Gardiner C, Darlison L, Creech L. The impact of the covid-19 pandemic on people with mesothelioma and their informal carers in the UK. Cancer Nursing Practice. 2021 doi: 10.7748/cnp.2021.e1773

Ejegi-Memeh S, Darlison L, Moylan A, Tod A, Sherborne V, Warnock C, Taylor B. Living with mesothelioma: A qualitative study of the experiences of male military veterans in the UK. European Journal of Oncology Nursing. Volume 50, February 2021 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejon.2020.101889


Allmark A, Tod A, Darlison L (2020) Mesothelioma: are nurses being put at risk in the workplace? Nursing Standard 35(12):14-16 https://rcni.com/nursing-standard/features/mesothelioma-are-nurses-being-put-risk-workplace-168506

Senek M, Robertson S, Tod A et al. Mesothelioma: exploring gender differences in time to diagnosis, seeking legal advice and occupational risk. Cancer Nursing Practice. 2020 doi: 10.7748/cnp.2020.e1745

Sherborne, V, Seymour, J, Taylor, B, Tod, A. What are the psychological effects of mesothelioma on patients and their carers? A scoping review. Psycho‐Oncology. 2020; 29: 1464– 1473. https://doi.org/10.1002/pon.5454


Matthews C, Freeman C, Sharples LD on behalf of the MesoTRAP investigators, et al. MesoTRAP: a feasibility study that includes a pilot clinical trial comparing video-assisted thoracoscopic partial pleurectomy decortication with indwelling pleural catheter in patients with trapped lung due to malignant pleural mesothelioma designed to address recruitment and randomisation uncertainties and sample size requirements for a phase III trial. BMJ Open Respiratory Research 2019;6:e000368. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjresp-2018-000368

Warnock, C., Lord, K., Taylor, B. et al. Patient experiences of participation in a radical thoracic surgical trial: findings from the Mesothelioma and Radical Surgery Trial 2 (MARS 2). Trials 2019 20, 598. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-019-3692-x

Taylor BH, Warnock C, Tod A. Communication of a mesothelioma diagnosis: developing recommendations to improve the patient experience. BMJ Open Respiratory Research 2019;6:e000413. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjresp-2019-000413

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