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Cancer patient left with no trace of disease after being given 18 months to live

Bob Berry is now cancer-free Credit: MEN Syndication

A man who was given just 18 months to live after being diagnosed with cancer has been left with no trace of the disease - after being one of the first in the world to test a new drug.

Bob Berry is one of just three people to take part in the trial at The Christie – and one of just 12 across the globe.

The 60-year-old was diagnosed with lung cancer three years ago, after suffering pains in his shoulder.

Bob, from Hazel Grove in Stockport, underwent surgery to remove the tumour, but it was too late – the disease was growing and had already spread to his lymphnodes.

He was referred to The Christie for treatment and soon began a gruelling course of radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

But it was unsuccessful.

Bob wasn’t responding to the drugs, and doctors told him he had around a year-and-a-half left to live.

They decided to transfer him to the hospital’s clinical trials unit, and 12 months ago Bob became one of the first people ever to be treated with the brand new drug, which can’t yet be named.

It is the first time it has been tested on humans, with the study taking place at only six centres worldwide.

The treatment combines the drug with immunotherapy.

Bob Berry with his family Credit: MEN Syndication

Bob, who takes his great great-nieces to their ballet class every week, says the trial has extended his life.

“Three years ago, I was given 12 – 18 months to live but I have already surpassed that and I feel well. At the end of the day, this clinical trial has extended my life and I couldn’t be more grateful. Anyone who is offered a clinical trial should seriously consider it.”

– Bob Berry

Bob’s consultant at The Christie, Dr Matthew Krebs, said:

“Bob has had a phenomenal response to taking part in this clinical trial. His most recent scans show that he’s had a complete response with no apparent trace of tumour in his body.

We will need to monitor Bob closely with regular scans to assess how durable this response will be.

As it is a combined study with a brand new drug, we still have a lot of further research to do before we can establish how these findings can help more patients like Bob in the future as cancer is a complex disease and not every patient responds as well as this.”

– Dr Matthew Krebs, The Christie