Prostate cancer is the most common cancer for men in the UK. ProstateHealth UK has secured rights to a new cancer specific biomarker, human glandular kallikrein 2 (hK2) which, when used with a combination of total, free and intact Prostate Specific Antigen (iPSA), has been shown in studies to considerably reduce the number of unnecessary biopsies in patients with an abnormal PSA test result by up to 50%. The use of this panel of 4 biomarkers is a more accurate method for the detection of clinically relevant prostate cancer.

Prof Neal, who last December was named by The Times as one of the top surgeons in his field in the UK, said: “ProstateCheck combines the biomarker panel with risk assessment and symptom score and is a major development for the early detection of prostate cancer. Prostate cancer in its early stages produces no symptoms and men with faster growing cancers benefit from early detection.

“Providing ProstateCheck in the workplace and for private self-paying individuals ensures that men, particularly those over 40 who are most at risk, can benefit from this new exciting development. As a result, a significant number of men with mildly raised PSA levels will not need to go through unnecessary biopsy procedures, and an appropriate referral can be made for cases where further investigation is recommended.”

Lung cancer is the second most common cancer for men in the UK and the third most common cancer among women. LungCheck offers significantly improved cancer detection by providing a unique blood test which is four times more likely to correctly identify lung cancer compared to a low-dose CT scan which is most commonly used to detect lung cancer. The blood test, which is based on a panel of seven biomarkers produced as part of the immune response to lung cancer, can detect early stage lung cancer and multiple pathological types.

Mr Wells, also recognised in The Times article as being one of the top surgeons in his field in the UK, said: “People with lung cancer often have no obvious symptoms and it is often detected later in the development of the disease when it is difficult to cure. I am thrilled that we can offer LungCheck in the workplace and to private self-paying individuals to improve early diagnosis, particularly to smokers who are most at risk, which could save lives. The service is available to non-smokers too.”

Prof Wishart, an expert on cancer in the workplace:

“Eight per cent of all cancer deaths, and more than 20% of lung cancer deaths, are caused by occupational exposure. There is also clear evidence that female night shift workers have an increased risk of breast cancer. Based on this type of evidence, a number of employers have recognised the benefits of providing cancer health checks for their staff.”

“We need to raise awareness about cancer risks in the workplace by educating staff and providing early detection using the very latest and most effective technology.”

“The government is actively encouraging corporate screening and companies should be congratulated for providing these checks and caring for the health and wellbeing of their staff, which ultimately leads to more productive employees who feel valued, as well as leading healthier lives.”

John Picken, Managing Director of HealthScreen UK, added;

“The Health and Safety Executive estimates 13,500 new diagnoses of work related cancer each year and the TUC estimates over 15,000 deaths. By comparison, there are just 250 deaths a year as a result of an immediate injury at work. Couple this with the increasing incidence of the most common cancers and employers have every incentive to give their employees much greater access to cancer awareness and early detection.”

“In the absence of any national screening programme, our two new unique services for prostate and lung cancer will have a dramatic, positive impact on the significant emotional and financial costs involved. “

Hewlett Packard recently took part in a prostate cancer awareness campaign with ProstateHealth UK which resulted in 12 cancers being detected. Sharon Ellerker, HR Director for UK and Ireland, said it proved most beneficial.

“We wanted to raise awareness across the whole HP community. A significant number of our male employees are over 40 and by investing in this campaign, we hope to have given them an understanding of their risk and the tools for early detection.

“The identification of 12 cancers which would have gone undetected otherwise fully justifies our investment and the feedback we have overall has been extremely positive.”