Scotland to host ‘Dragons Den-style’ contest to fund cancer research

Worldwide Cancer Research charity will decide how £4 million will be used

cancer research

A Dragon’s Den-style competition to find the next big cancer research project is taking place in Scotland’s capital this week.

Some of the world’s leading scientists are coming together on Thursday (Sept 28) in Edinburgh for the Scottish- based charity Worldwide Cancer Research (WCR), to decide the fate of £4 million raised by supporters.

The Scientific Advisory Committee – 24 eminent scientists in the field of cancer who volunteer their time – has scrutinised hundreds of proposals from top research institutions all over the world before settling on the best.

WCR funds early-stage research into any type of cancer, anywhere in the world.

The charity’s chief executive Dr Helen Rippon said: “The meeting is in the style of Dragons’ Den, with scientists pitching for the projects they think are the most exciting and ground-breaking for the future of cancer treatment and research.

“Our aim is to fund the best quality research with the best possible impact. We have set few boundaries and an open remit, so we will take pitches from junior researchers to prominent experts in the field of cancer research and are happy to fund long-term projects that might come to fruition in 20 or 30 years.”

The scientists had to sift through around 800 applications from as far afield as Bangladesh, India and China, as well as from the UK and the rest of Europe, the Scottish Herald reported.

The 40-year-old charity has had significant success with its research funding, including with the new drug Olapariv, now licensed in the UK and USA, which has significantly improved the treatment of ovarian cancer, a cancer with poor survival rates.

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