Press Article19/11/2009

Study could 'improve' radiotherapy

A £160,000 grant to develop a genetically-targeted breast cancer treatment has been awarded to Queen's University Belfast.

The money was given to Professor Kevin Prise and his team after they discovered that a number of genes worked together to repair DNA damage caused by radiotherapy.

He now plans to expose cancer cells to high levels of radiation in the laboratory to see why this is happening.

Breast Cancer Campaign, the charity that awarded the grant, are hopeful the research could one day be used to create a less destructive form of treatment.

"There are many different genes which are important in both the development and treatment of breast cancer - identifying them is a vital area of research and we are delighted to be funding this project," Arlene Wilkie, director of policy at the charity, explained.

Professor Prise said: "We hope our findings will lead to methods to predict which patients will gain limited benefit from this treatment.

"The course of radiotherapy could then be adapted to the individual to ensure they receive a more effective dose."

Copyright © Press Association 2009


 

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