In a groundbreaking move to save thousands of lives, the UK Government has announced its decision to join Prostate Cancer UK to unveil a £42 million screening trial aimed at finding ways to detect the country’s most common cancer earlier.
The trial will involve over 300,000 men, with one in ten participants expected to be Black men, who are at a much higher risk of developing prostate cancer.
A statement from the Department of Health and Social Care said that the first-of-its-kind trial, named TRANSFORM, will utilize innovative screening methods, such as MRI scans, to detect prostate cancer.
The screening trial has the potential to introduce new methods that provide more accurate results than the current blood tests, which can miss some cancers and sometimes suggest prostate cancer when none is present.
Health and Social Care Secretary, Victoria Atkins, stated that the government hopes that the funding will help to save the lives of thousands more men through advanced screening methods that can detect the cancer as early as possible.
The statement added that £16 million will be invested in the trial by the government through the National Institute of Health Research, and Prostate Cancer UK, which has led the development of the trial, will provide £26 million.
The trial is expected to begin in the Spring of 2024.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in the UK and currently has no screening program. It often presents no symptoms until it has grown large and may be more difficult to treat at this stage.