Elizabeth Hurley Visits Sussex Medical School

8 October 2018, 18:02 | Updated: 8 October 2018, 18:05

Hollywood actress Elizabeth Hurley

Hollywood actress Elizabeth Hurley has taken part in research at Brighton And Sussex Medical School.

The work explores the benefits of yoga, exercise and mindfulness on those being treated for breast cancer.

The team are investigating whether stress reduction techniques can increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy for those with breast cancer.

The star hailed the work as "ground-breaking" during her visit to the laboratory.

The 53 year old is the global ambassador for Estee Lauder's Pink Ribbon breast cancer awareness campaign.

She had her saliva tested to measure levels of the hormone cortisol, which indicates stress.

Cortisol interacts with almost every cell in the human body, including cancer cells.

Doctors believe high levels of the hormone could make chemotherapy less effective.

The research is being carried out in partnership by Dame Lesley Fallowfield, Professor of Psycho-oncology at Brighton and Sussex Medical School and Dr Melanie Flint, reader in cancer biology at the University of Brighton.

The actress said:

"Every 19 seconds, somewhere in the world, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer.

"The work that the team at Brighton and Sussex Medical School is doing is just one example of the extensive ground-breaking research that is being undertaken by the BCRF around the world, with generous support from The Estee Lauder Companies' Breast Cancer Campaign, as part of its mission to create a breast cancer-free world."

Dame Lesley said:

"Going through breast cancer treatment can be an extremely challenging and stressful time for patients and their families.

"We want to establish whether stress reducing activities performed on a regular basis could have a positive effect on not only patients' wellbeing, but also on improving the effectiveness of their treatment as we know that cortisol can cause cancer cells to grow and also interfere with treatment.

"Collectively, we are committed to the mission of working towards a breast cancer-free world."