Cancer drug development

Boffins at York University have found that the opium poppy could help cancer patients. A chemical made from the plant is being tested as an anti-cancer drug in clinical teste.

Live updates

Cancer drug potential

Scientists in our region have found a chemical in opium poppies which is currently being considered as a potential anti-cancer drug.

Biologists at the University of York have discovered the genes that produce a chemical called Noscapine, which in the future could be used to treat patients with tumours.

Cancer drug aid

Professor Ian Graham is leading the team at York University which has discovered the key to mass-producing a chemical called Noscapine. It's extracted from poppies, and is currently being tested as a potential anti-cancer drug.

Researchers discovered a bundle of five genes which tell the poppy plant how to produce the chemical.


Poppy discovery

Green poppy capsules Credit: Carol Walker

Poppies, like these ones in Tasmania, have helped scientists in York discover how a chemical is produced that is used for anti-cancer drugs. It could mean they can mass produce the chemical in the future.

Poppies growing in Tasmania
Poppies in Tasmania Credit: Carol Walker
Tasmanian poppy fields Credit: Carol Walker
Back to top

Latest ITV News reports