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Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer

Clinical trials likely to restart

An area of concern for Brain Tumour Research during the current pandemic has been the halting of clinical trials. These are part of the vital pathway that lead from the scientist’s bench to the patient’s bedside and underpin the clinical innovations that will improve both options and outcome for those affected by brain tumours.

Alex Norris, an MP we have spoken with recently, has now asked the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to support the life sciences sector in restarting clinical trials paused due to the Covid-19 outbreak; and when those he plans will be announced.

Replying on behalf of the Secretary of State Helen Whately MP said: “The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is currently considering how to re-start paused studies in a way which will protect the continued delivery of nationally prioritised COVID-19 studies, which are an essential part of the Government response to the ongoing pandemic. It is engaging with research funders, including industry, and NHS Research and Development departments in formulating these plans. The NIHR will publish plans on re-starting paused studies in due course.”

This proposed return to clinical trials was also noted in the weekly telephone call held by NHS England for cancer charities yesterday (Tuesday) evening and Cally Palmer, Chief Executive of The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, and National Cancer Director for NHS England said that, although the road ahead is “long, slow and challenging”  we are now in a period of “restoration and recovery.” We will always contend that clinical trials are central to such a period.

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