Manchester Christie cancer hospital's £35m trial unit

Christie Hospital's early trials unit
Image caption About 200 new drugs will be tested every year, the hospital says

A £35m clinical trials unit, described by hospital officials as the biggest in the world, has opened at The Christie Hospital in Manchester.

About 2,400 cancer patients every year will be given access to the latest treatments and about 200 new drugs will be tested there.

Coronation Street actor Sally Dynevor, who plays Sally Webster, helped mark the arrival of the first patients.

She was treated at the hospital for breast cancer last year.

She discovered a lump while researching a storyline for her character.

Saves lives

"I can't thank Christie enough - they helped save my life," she said.

"Being diagnosed with breast cancer was very difficult for me and my family, but The Christie was so wonderful.

"They saved my life and this world-class new centre will save thousands more lives."

The hospital's new three-storey building at its main site in Withington also includes the biggest chemotherapy facility in the UK.

Clinical trial patients will be housed in a centre which has 70 beds, 65 treatment chairs and 19 consulting rooms.

Chief Executive Caroline Shaw said: "This new centre will enable us to undertake even more research, ultimately saving lives across the world.

"Through providing the highest quality environment and integrating clinical trials and chemotherapy services we will also be able to significantly improve the patient experience and ensure local patients can access the very best services and treatment."

The centre has been funded by The Christie Hospital itself, its charitable arm and Cancer Research UK.

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