University to host centre for cancer clinical trials

Health news

Cancer patients across Yorkshire will soon have better access to pioneering treatments following the establishment of a new clinical trials centre at the University of Leeds.

The Yorkshire Cancer Research Centre for Early Phase Clinical Trials, funded by Yorkshire Cancer Research, will provide more opportunities for Yorkshire-based patients to participate in innovative studies.

The centre has been formed in partnership with the Clinical Trials Research Unit at the University of Leeds and clinicians and scientists at the universities of Leeds, Sheffield, York, Hull and Bradford.

Professor Julia Brown, Director of the Clinical Trials Research Unit at the University of Leeds, said: “Clinical trials are vital for the development of new and effective cancer treatments. One of the major challenges is, however, taking a new idea and turning it into a clinical trial for patients with cancer. This has meant that, to date, patients with cancer in Yorkshire have had limited access to novel therapies within early phase clinical trials.

“We are therefore delighted to be working with Yorkshire Cancer Research and cancer researchers across the county on this exciting initiative. It will represent a significant change in the delivery of cancer clinical trials research and will clearly improve and accelerate the transition of new treatments from development to patient care in our region.”

Yorkshire Cancer Research
has provided £724,339 to fund core staff who will support researchers in accessing limited national funding opportunities or industry support, core staff at hospitals across Yorkshire to support clinical trial set-up and expert multidisciplinary mentorship and advice for cancer researchers in early clinical trial design and development.

As well as providing better access to innovative, new cancer treatments, it is expected that the centre will increase cancer research funding into Yorkshire from a variety of funders, including the pharmaceutical industry, and develop the next generation of leading cancer researchers in the county.

Yorkshire Cancer Research recently announced the development of a new strategy that will aim to tackle cancer inequalities and improve outcomes for patients in Yorkshire.

The region currently lags behind most areas of England in terms of premature, preventable deaths from cancer.  Mortality rates in people aged 75 and under, including those considered preventable, are particularly high in areas such as Hull, Doncaster and Calderdale.

The charity is focusing its research on areas that will make a significant difference to Yorkshire people, including prevention, early detection through better screening and easier access to clinical trials.

Charles Rowett, Chief Executive Officer at Yorkshire Cancer Research, said: “We’re extremely excited to be part of this new venture. Funding the Yorkshire Cancer Research Centre for Early Phase Clinical Trials demonstrates our commitment to improving cancer outcomes in Yorkshire. This project is the first of many patient-centric investments that the charity is planning for the coming years.”

Further information

Nikki Brady, Senior PR Officer, Yorkshire Cancer Research. Tel: 01423 877228. Email: