An experimental cancer treatment initiative is to get a £3m funding boost to trial new drugs and therapies.
Manchester Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC) works with local NHS facilities to give people access to state-of-the-art treatments and has pioneered work in blood testing.
It is now planning clinical trials for patients with rare cancers.
Prof Caroline Dive said she was “delighted” as the money will “benefit people in the North West and beyond.”
Manchester ECMC is a collaboration between Cancer Research UK, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Manchester.
‘Biggest scientific challenges’
The funding, part of a wider £47.5m investment into the ECMC network across the UK, has been provided as part of a partnership between Cancer Research UK and the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR).
A Manchester ECMC representative said the funding will be used over the next five years to develop innovative new treatments, including immunotherapies, and to improve existing treatments.
Prof Dive, who is joint lead of the centre, said thousands of patients had been provided with “access to life-saving drugs and therapies through the Manchester ECMC” and the clinical trials they will run were “crucial” to new and improved treatments becoming adopted as standard by the NHS.
Co-lead Dr Natalie Cook said the ECMC was looking forward to “offering many more clinical trial opportunities to patients and translating new biomarker discoveries into the clinic”.
NIHR chief executive Prof Lucy Chappell said the wider ECMC network brought together “top scientists and clinicians to tackle some of the biggest scientific challenges” and enabled more people to join trials that might help them.