24 November 2011
The first group of patients have been enrolled in an NHS project to improve gene testing.
Cancer Research UK has begun recruiting patients to take part in an innovative scheme which aims to show how gene testing could be used to match a patient with the most suitable type of cancer treatment.
The charity's main aim is to develop the method and implement it widely across healthcare facilities.
Medical staff in seven of the Experimental Cancer Medicine Centres across the country will request participation from up to 9,000 patients to participate in the £5.5 million Stratified Medicine Programme.
The project will aim to cover six tumour types including breast, bowel, lung, prostate, ovarian and melanoma skin cancer.
James Peach, director of Cancer Research UK's Stratified Medicine Programme, said: "We know that prescribing certain drugs according to the genetic basis of the tumour can improve the chances of successful treatment."
He added that by harnessing the technique to tailor treatments to specific patients, healthcare can move a step closer to personalised medicine.
A further project by Cancer Research UK called the Genomics Initiative will use the latest high-tech gene sequencing machines to scan all of the genes in a cancer patient.
Posted by Edward Bartel
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