Singer and actress Bernie Nolan has been diagnosed with breast cancer, according to the News Of The World.

The 49-year-old – who was runner-up in ITV1’s Popstar To Operastar earlier this year – is the third of the singing sisters to be diagnosed with the disease.

Older siblings Linda and Anne have both successfully battled breast cancer within the past ten years.

Bernie, who received the diagnosis last week, has been told that the cancer has already spread to her lymph nodes and she faces a mastectomy and chemotherapy.

“I’m fighting this,” she told the paper. “I’m strong and I’m not going to let this defeat me, I’m not going to sit back and let that happen.”

The mum-of-one added that the hardest part had been telling her 10-year-old daughter Erin about her diagnosis, but added, “The best thing about having a child is I have the extra strength because I want to see her grow up and I have to be strong for her.”

Bernie’s daughter now faces genetic tests to see if she is at risk of developing the disease.

The News Of The World reports that the other Nolan sisters Maureen, Denise and Loose Women presenter Colleen, who are so far clear of the disease – will also be tested.

As well as her singing career with her sisters, Bernie has appeared in a number of TV shows including Brookside and The Bill, in which she played Sgt Sheelagh Murphy.

She finished in second place to Darius Campbell on Popstar To Operastar, in which pop stars were trained to perform operatic arias.