The University of Nottingham is starting a major three-year research project into preventing a sometimes fatal condition in cancer patients.
About 20% of deaths from venous thromboembolism, (VTE, or blood clotting) occur in people with cancer.
The study, funded by Cancer Research UK, will analyse data from more than 500,000 UK patients.
Dr Matthew Grainge said it would ultimately help prevent thousands of deaths a year.
He said: "With the data that we've got available, [we're] able to actually not just look at how great a risk of venous thrombosis cancer patients are, but also what times during their illness they're most at risk particularly in relation to any hospital or outside of hospital treatment that they might have."
Data will be analysed from patients both with and without cancer.
VTE occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein. It can be fatal if the clot breaks away and lodges in the lung.