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Prostate Cancer

Volume 404: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to encourage applications for research funding for projects relating to prostate cancer. [109919]

The Department, jointly with other members of the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI), has established the NCRI prostate cancer collaboratives, and is funding half of the total cost of £7.4 million over five years. The collaboratives regularly issue calls for proposals for pilot projects to support innovative research ideas.The Department is currently directly funding a large-scale randomised controlled trial (called ProtecT) evaluating the effectiveness of treatments for clinically localised prostate cancer. The trial, at a total cost of about £14 million, is being undertaken in nine centres. It will involve over 100,000 men between the ages of 50 and 69 years, and will compare three treatments: active monitoring; radical prostactectomy, and radical radiotherapy. The Department is also funding several other important projects into other aspects of prostate cancer that have been identified as priorities, and by 2003–04 will be directly funding £4.2 million of research a year into prostate cancer, subject to quality proposals being received.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to extend the model of the Prostate Cancer Advisory Group to other disease groups. [109912]

The Department will continue to encourage, build on and improve partnership working between the National Health Service, the voluntary sector and professional organisations. The prostate cancer advisory group is one model that can be considered as this work develops.