Newspaper headlines: 'New era' for cancer drugs and child pickpockets

The results of cancer trials unveiled at a conference in Chicago have inspired a flurry of front page articles in Monday's papers, with experts claiming the news marks a "new era" in the fight to find a cure.

The Mail quotes experts saying the findings are the "biggest step forward since chemotherapy". The paper also highlights the "spectacular" results of a British trial which saw tumours in half of inoperable skin cancer patients shrinking or disappearing.

Across at the Times the positive news also warrants front-page dominance, and the paper's health editor Chris Smyth believes that the "hype might be justified".

He writes: "The results offer the first hope that combining immunotherapies with other methods could magnify the impact and allow more patients to benefit.

"The method is so new that no one knows how long patients will survive..."

Image caption The image on the left shows melanoma which has spread into the lungs - the large grey area are tumours. On the right, the tumours have shrunk after treatment

The paper goes on to warn that the new drugs do have side effects including "eczema, tiredness and liver problems".

Meanwhile, the Daily Express also gets in on the action, and carries the heartfelt account of 61-year-old Vicky Brown from Cardiff, who was given just months to live after doctors discovered a lump in her breast.

But after being put on a clinical trial and injected with the "groundbreaking" new drugs - a combination of nivolumab and ipilimumab - her tumour disappeared.

Agency staff and surgery closures

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Sticking with a health theme The Daily Telegraph prints today the results of its investigation into what it terms as an "extraordinary boom" in agencies supplying doctors and nurses to the NHS.

The paper says 10 of the UK's biggest medical recruiters have posted overall takings of £7.7bn since 2009, and claims that the people running these agencies earn up to £950,000 a year.

In a similar vein, on page four of the Mail the paper quotes the head of NHS England Simon Stevens vowing to curb the number of agency staff "ripping off" hospitals in the UK.

The paper quotes Mr Stevens as saying to the BBC: "What we've got to do is convert that spending into good, paying permanent jobs."

Meanwhile, the Independent is concerned about the number of GPs' surgeries which have closed in the past couple of years, which it estimates have forced more than 160,000 patients to find a new doctor.

In England, Scotland and Wales, 61 practices have closed since April 2013, the paper says, quoting figures from a freedom of information request submitted by medical magazine Pulse.

The paper notes that Britain already has fewer doctors per head of population than most other European countries, and such closures are "piling pressure on other GPs".

What the commentators say:

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Media captionBroadcaster Shyama Perera and James Rampton, features writer for The Independent, join the BBC News Channel to discuss Monday's top stories.

Eye-catching headlines

Clarkson at war on Jihadists - Former Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson criticises Western leaders for refusing to send troops to fight Islamic State.

World Cup bribes row is racist , says Qatar - The former prime minister of Qatar has denied claims that his country paid large bribes to win the right to host the 2022 World Cup and accused the west of racism, the Times reports.

Heard the one about pockets of laughter? It's all in your genes - Researchers have shown that people with a certain genetic variant smile or laugh more, the Daily Telegraph reports.

Human Rights Act

The Daily Mail is urging the government to scrap the Human Rights Act, which it describes as a law which defends the rights of criminals and terrorists, while betraying those of the law-abiding.

And this is a view which appears to be supported by a senior judge, whose comments are reported in The Times, The Mail and The Daily Mirror.

According to the papers, Judge Michael Stokes was appalled when a murder suspect refused to turn up to court to enter a plea because he was "too anxious" to leave his cell.

Judge Stokes told Nottingham Crown Court - to quote [police detective] Harry Callahan in Dirty Harry - he was "all broken up" about the defendant's human rights, and could not understand why he was not made to come to court.

Elephant man

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Elsewhere, the papers also carry rave reviews for the Hollywood actor Bradley Cooper - who's starring in a West End production of The Elephant Man.

The Independent is impressed by the way he transforms himself from Hollywood hunk to misshapen outcast, while The Guardian and Times are full of plaudits for Cooper - if not the play itself.

The Daily Telegraph too praises his touching and subtle performance, as well as his impeccable English accent, while noting that many of his co-stars appear to have been coached by Dick Van Dyke.

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