July 2002

From Norwegian Cancer Society

Peto and Doll win King Olav V's Prize for Outstanding Cancer Research

Tobacco researchers Sir Richard Peto and Sir Richard Doll will Thursday 4. July be awarded King Olav V's Prize for Outstanding Cancer Research. The NOK 1 million prize will be presented at the closing ceremony of the 18th International UICC Cancer Congress in Oslo, Norway, this evening.

Sir Richard Peto and Sir Richard Doll, both of the UK, have been pioneers in mapping the health hazards caused by smoking. Their groundbreaking study in the 1950s and 60s proved there is a link between smoking and lung cancer. In fact, in the 1950s, their study identified smoking as a factor not only in lung cancer but in many other causes of death, including coronary heart disease. The study of the smoking habits of 40 000 English physicians was concluded in 2001.

"It is with great pleasure we present this extraordinary prize to these eminent cancer researchers. The results of the studies conducted by Sir Richard Doll and Sir Richard Peto have resulted in a huge body of knowledge to reinforce our work to combat tobacco. Anti-tobacco efforts are one of the most important areas for the Norwegian Cancer Society", says Lilly Christensen, Secretary General of the Norwegian Cancer Society.

Sir Richard Peto is one of the world's leading experts on why smokers die prematurely. He is adept not only at collecting and analysing statistics, but at presenting them in simple terms which anyone can understand. For instance:

  • "Smoking kills six people a minute world-wide."
  • "A quarter of 20-year olds who smoke regularly will be killed by tobacco in middle age."
  • "If women smoke like men they will die like men."

At the age of 89, Sir Richard Doll and Sir Richard Peto, 30 years his junior, are active in the international anti-tobacco movement. Sir Richard Peto has been a particularly outspoken critic of the tobacco industry. He supports the banning of tobacco advertising in England. Norway is one of the few countries in Europe which has banned tobacco advertising.

Supported by his own studies, Sir Richard Peto strongly recommends placing far more focus on helping adults quit smoking.

"The Two Sir Richards" will be available for interviews on Thursday from 2.30 -- 4.30 p.m. Please contact Erik Valen to book appointments.

They will receive the prize at Oslo City Hall at 6 p.m. on Thursday, 4 July.

They will hold an Award Lecture in Sonja Henie Ballrom, SAS Plaza Hotel from 11.15 -- 12.00 a.m. on Friday 5. July. A special analysis on cancer deaths in Norway caused by smoking will be presented.

This article comes from Science Blog. Copyright 2004

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