The Southampton Clinical Trials Unit, based at the University of Southampton, has been chosen to run a new NHS England programme accelerating research into potentially ground-breaking cancer treatments.

The Cancer Vaccine Launch Pad (CVLP) aims to improve patient access to clinical trials which test new immunotherapies by speeding up the development of personalised cancer vaccines.

It’s hoped thousands of patients at hospitals across England will be recruited to these trials, with University Hospital Southampton one of the first to open to the programme.

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Director of the Cancer Research UK Southampton Clinical Trial Unit, Professor Gareth Griffiths, said: “Cancer vaccines have the potential to improve the way we treat the disease, particularly for those cancers where treatment options are currently limited or very demanding on patients’ bodies.

“Although there have been some trials of cancer vaccines in the past, there are a new generation of vaccines that that are personalised to individual biological features of a patient’s disease.

“We are delighted to have been chosen to run the national platform which will bring together a number of vaccine trials so that patients can access these trials more easily, improving our research knowledge and hopefully leading to improved treatment outcomes for patients.”