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Science
CASE NOTES
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Tuesday 21:00-21:30
Repeat Wednesday 16:30
Dr Mark Porter gives listeners the low-down on what the medical profession does and doesn't know. Each week an expert in the studio tackles a particular topic and there are reports from around the UK on the health of the nation - and the NHS.
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LISTEN AGAINListen 30 min
Listen to 10th January
PRESENTER
DR MARK PORTER
Dr Mark Porter
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Tuesday 10th January 2006
The Royal Marsden Hospital

Full programme transcript >>

The Royal Marsden Hospital

Dr Mark Porter kicks off a new series of Case Notes with a special edition in which he visits the Royal Marsden Hospital to look at cancer therapies and research.

The hospital was the first in the world to be dedicated to the study and treatment of cancers.  It was founded in 1851 by Dr William Marsden after he lost his wife to the disease.

Recent Developments
The programme explores recent developments in a new type of radiotherapy, IMRT, which has the ability to target tumours of all shapes with ionising radiation and with minimal damage to healthy tissue.

As clinical oncologist Vincent Khoo explains, this enables clinicians to deliver higher concentrations and more effective doses of radiation to the tumour than has been possible in the past - now that healthy tissue in the tumour area escapes being irradiated too.

Genetics
Genetics is another key area in the battle against cancer: Dr Ros Eeles, consultant in clinical oncology and cancer genetics, discusses the extent to which a positive family history may be important in your predisposition to developing cancer.

Drug Development Unit
Stan Kaye, head of the Marsden's Drug Development Unit, discusses how genetics can also be used to identify particular changes that differentiate cancer cells from normal cells. This in turn can identify new targets for drugs such as Herceptin which is proving a major breakthrough in the treatment of breast cancer.

There's also a visit to the Drug Development Unit where new drugs are being trialled for a range of cancers in new and innovative ways.
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