Olaparib approved in Scotland as a first-line maintenance treatment

9th December 2019

Our Chief Executive, Dr Helen Rippon, talks about what this decision could mean for hundreds of patients every year in Scotland.

Olaparib and Worldwide Cancer Research

In the mid-90s, Professor Steve Jackson came to Worldwide Cancer Research for funding for a research project. At the time, Professor Jackson did not imagine a drug like olaparib would be the end goal of his research. He wanted to learn more about the basics of cancer to open new avenues of research that might one day benefit people. The key discoveries he made with this research led him to develop the drug we know today as olaparib. Over 20 years later, after many years of research and clinical trials, olaparib is now helping people with advanced ovarian cancer live longer and, in some cases, has even cured patients.

Today's news means more people could live even longer lives, and have more quality time to spend with their loved ones.

Olaparib today

Olaparib has already been used to treat over 5,000 people with ovarian cancer worldwide and could treat thousands more over the coming years. In the US, olaparib has also been approved for the treatment of certain breast cancers and recent research has shown promising results for its use in prostate and pancreatic cancer.

Below: watch the moment Sandy, who took part in a clinical trial for olaparib and eventually became cancer-free meets Professor Steve Jackson, the scientist we funded all those years ago.