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PM announces DNA storage

PM announces DNA storage

The Government has announced plans for NHS patients’ genetic codes to be held in a database to help scientific research.

David Cameron said the £100m programme, which will track the genetic structure of 100,000 patients suffering from cancer and other rare diseases, would “push the boundaries” of scientific research.

“We want to crack cancer and the DNA database can help us to do that but we also want to keep Britain at the absolute forefront of biotechnology, of pharmaceutical industry. We can be a real world leader," the Prime Minister told BBC News.

Jeremy Hunt this morning insisted the plans did not amount to a "DNA database" and the information would be held securely.

He told Sky News: "It's completely voluntary. Their information will be totally anonymised, so there's no potential of someone leaking that information back to an individual person. But that will enable us to make ground-breaking discoveries about how cancer works, about who's susceptible to cancer, how we can head it off, what treatments might work."

Green Box: PM announces DNA storageClick to open

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On air

David Cameron: Database can help us crack cancer

10/12/2012 on BBC News