CITY councillor Gwyneth Cooper, pictured, joined researchers from the Countess of Chester Hospital in urging more women to consider taking part in a breast cancer prevention study called IBIS-2.

The groundbreaking study is seen by many experts as the next step in the fight against a disease which affects more than 5,000 women a year in the North West.

IBIS-2 is the first trial to investigate whether a breast cancer treatment drug called anastrozole can prevent the dis-ease in postmenopausal women at increased risk of breast cancer.

Previous research on the drug as a treatment for early breast cancer showed that it reduced the risk of developing cancer in the opposite breast by over 50% but this will be the first time the drug is being investigated as a preventive measure.

Cllr Cooper has been on the IBIS-2 trial since 2005. She said: 'My mother died of breast cancer and because of my family history, I thought that I was at an increased risk of the dis-ease.

'I have a healthy lifestyle, good diet and I look after myself but sometimes I feel that these precautions may not be enough. I then read about the IBIS-2 trial in my local paper and decided to contact the Countess of Chester Hospital.'

The study is open to women in the Chester area who are aged 40-70, have passed the menopause, have a family history of breast cancer or who have been told by their doctors they have other risk factors.

This includes women whose mother or sister had breast cancer or ovarian cancer at the age of 50 or under.

Cllr Cooper added: 'As an IBIS-2 participant, I have regular check-ups.

Women can find out more about whether they are eligible to take part in the study by calling Mary Aldous on 01244 366011 or visiting