Cash award for cancer researchers

    Press/Media: Research


    Scientists at Dundee University have been awarded £11m to investigate the causes of cancer and develop better treatments.

    Seven research groups will benefit from the Cancer Research UK cash and 11 new research posts will be created.

    A spokesman said the award, which is the largest sum the university has received for cancer research, reflected the high calibre of its cancer work.

    The research will take place over the next three to five years.

    Three of the research grants, totalling more than £8m, have been awarded to the Cancer Research UK Molecular Pharmacology Unit at the University of Dundee.

    Anti-cancer drugs

    The remaining four research grants have been awarded to scientists based in the School of Life Sciences at the University of Dundee.

    Scientists will look at how drugs are processed by the body to help them identify more tailored anti-cancer drugs with fewer side-effects.

    They will also attempt to unravel the role of enzymes in a vital pathway which can be faulty in cancer cases.

    And they will look at the controls in place when cells multiply to stop them corrupting, triggering cancer.


    Different people respond completely differently to different drugs
    Dr Colin Henderson
    Cancer specialist

    Sir Alan Langlands, Dundee University's principal, said they were grateful to Cancer Research UK for its support.

    "Awards on this scale are a clear endorsement of the calibre of the cancer research being carried out at the University of Dundee," he said.

    "We are pleased that our researchers are able to contribute to the understanding, treatment and prevention of cancer."

    Dr Colin Henderson, a cancer specialist at the university, told BBC Radio's Good Morning Scotland programme that the funds would help research into how everyday chemicals interact with the body.

    He said: "If we can understand more about the defence systems that we have in our bodies, we can then try to understand how we can deliver anti-cancer treatments more effectively."

    He added: "This is leading to the idea of personalised medicine, which is another central part of our research - the idea that different people respond completely differently to different drugs and if we can understand the basis for that we can tailor different drugs for different people."

    Period9 Sept 2005

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