By Lucy Johnston
SCIENTISTS are on the brink of beating cervical cancer using a simple drug to destroy the virus that causes the disease.
The breakthrough will give fresh hope to women infected with the human papilloma virus, which is linked to up to 3,000 new cases of cervical cancer in the UK every year and 900 deaths.
The virus is also linked with mouth and throat cancers in men and women.
Researchers at Leeds University have decoded the way the HPV virus causes cancerous changes and are now working with chemists to adapt existing antiviral drugs to block the process.
They believe this could prevent cervical cancer.