Dame Janet Husband appointed chair of the National Cancer Research Institute

The National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI)

Dame Janet Husband has been appointed the new chair of the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI).

Dame Janet will take up the post with immediate effect and will lead the NCRI into its eleventh year. She takes over from the former chief medical officer for Scotland and later for England, Professor Sir Kenneth Calman, who steps down after three years in the role.

The NCRI is an organisation made up of 21 government and charity partners as well as the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry. Its role is to facilitate joint planning for cancer research.

Dame Janet is Emeritus Professor of Radiology at The Institute of Cancer Research and she has previously been President of the Royal College of Radiologists and Medical Director of the Royal Marsden Hospital. She is best known nationally and internationally for her pioneering work on the development of imaging in cancer at the Royal Marsden. Her early research was on the prototype of the world's first CT body scanner at Northwick Park Hospital.

Sir Kenneth said: "I'm delighted Dame Janet has been appointed as NCRI’s chair. Her previous roles across both the medical and managerial aspects of cancer, as well as her extensive experience in radiology, will be invaluable to the NCRI.

“Now is an exciting time to be taking up the post. The ten year anniversary of the NCRI creates a fantastic opportunity to take stock of what has been achieved so far and to shape the next ten years in the cancer community.”

As well as the ten year anniversary of the NCRI, 2011 is the Year of Radiotherapy. The year’s activities will help improve public understanding and increase awareness of the value of radiotherapy, 100 years after Marie Curie won her second Nobel Prize for her work on radium.

Dame Janet said: “It is a great privilege to lead the NCRI into its second decade, and together we will build on the enormous achievements which have placed NCRI at the centre of collaborative cancer research in the UK.

“This new decade presents enormous challenges for cancer research – the changing landscape of healthcare delivery, the current economic climate and, equally importantly, the increasing complexity of multidisciplinary research and the dawn of mare targeted medicine – will all have an impact.

“Within this changing environment, the NCRI will be a crucial forum for lively debate where complex research questions can be addressed in a comprehensive and timely way.”

Ends

For media enquiries contact the NCRI press office on 020 3469 8300 or, out-of-hours, the duty press officer on 07050 264 059.