Scientists have developed a new test in order to decide how best to administer cancer treatments.
The team from Newcastle University claim that the test can be used to select which patients with ovarian cancer will benefit from new drugs called PARP inhibitors.
Presented at the National Cancer Research Institute Cancer Conference in Liverpool, the research found that around 60 per cent of all patients with ovarian cancer could benefit from the treatment.
Dr Lesley Walker, Cancer Research UK's director of cancer information, said: "It's exciting to see the development of promising new 'smart' drugs such as PARP inhibitors.
"But equally important is the need to identify exactly which sub-groups of patients will benefit from these new treatments."
The doctor added that this kind of test will become "invaluable" for doctors because they will enable them to "get the most effective treatments quickly to patients, sparing them from unnecessary treatments and side effects".