Feature image (L–R) | Hudson Institute Ovarian Cancer researcher, Dr Maree Bilandzic
and Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation (OCRF) Ambassador and patient, Leane Flynn

Ovarian cancer

Ovarian cancer is the tenth most common cancer in Australia, and a silent killer. It is often asymptomatic and goes undetected until the advanced stages, when the cancer is widespread.

Only a handful of new treatment options have emerged in the past 30 years, and these typically become ineffective as the cancer develops resistance to chemotherapy.

What is ovarian cancer?

Ovarian cancer signs and symptoms

Causes and risks of ovarian cancer

Stages of ovarian cancer

Ovarian cancer treatment

BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes in ovarian cancer

Our ovarian cancer research

While some women’s cancers can now be diagnosed at an early stage, eg; cervical cancer by a PAP smear or breast cancer by a mammogram, an early detection test for ovarian cancer does not exist. The key to ovarian cancer survival lies in better detection. If found early, many ovarian cancer patients can be cured. 

Our world-leading ovarian cancer researchers are focused on developing an early detection test and discovering better, more effective personalised treatments that will help girls and women survive their diagnosis long term.

The Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation (OCRF) tissue bank at Hudson Institute is a vital resource for tackling ovarian cancer. It is one of the largest Australian repositories of ovarian cancer tumour samples for use in research, housing more than 2,448 ovarian tissue samples used to advance ovarian cancer diagnosis and treatment.

VIEW VIDEO | Dr Maree Bilandzic – Developing early detection test for ovarian cancer (7NEWS)

Detecting and treating ovarian cancer

Led by Dr Andrew Stephens, the Ovarian Cancer Biomarkers research group is focused on creating a future free of ovarian cancer by developing an early detection test and better treatments to achieve long-lasting cancer remission.

“The fact is that no early detection test for ovarian cancer exists – it’s a simple necessity we owe women.” – Dr Maree Bilandzic, Senior Postdoctoral Researcher

Our team’s projects

  • Development and preclinical testing of a new cancer drug
  • Understanding and targeting invasive tumours
  • Creation of early detection tests
  • Combination therapies to improve patient response to current treatments
  • Precision medicine approaches to rapidly personalise therapy
  • Early detection test for women with the BRCA1 and BRAC2 gene.

Hope for children and women with GCT

microRNAs – the secret weapon in BRCA1 detection

Closing in on ovarian cancer treatments

Ovarian cancer collaborators

Support for people with Ovarian cancer

Our scientists cannot provide medical advice.
To find out about ovarian cancer, please visit (see list of useful organisations below).

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