VHIO and 27 other leading European Cancer Institutes are working together in a unique collaboration to share infrastructures and collaborate on projects to help advance cancer resarch and treatment: EurocanPlatform.
The project has received €12 million from the European Union to streamline cross boarder research. The project will find more effective ways to ensure the prevention, early discovery and treatment of different forms of cancer.
Professor Ulrik Ringborg from the Karolinska Institutet who are coordinating the project comments, “In a way, you could say that this initiative represents a paradigm shift in cancer research. The project will last five years, leaving a legacy of a collaborative structure within the EU for cancer research.”
Despite improved diagnostics and treatment in recent years, the number of people dying of cancer is expected to rise. Already the world’s deadliest disease group, cancer is growing as one of the largest chronic diseases, putting immense pressure on healthcare systems around the globe.
At the same time, however, modern cancer research is rapidly improving understanding of the disease, and new technologies are being developed for use in patient-end cancer research. Scientists hope that they will one day not only be able to identify people at risk for cancer, but also adapt therapies to different types of cancer and to patients’ individual circumstances.
“An important part of the project concerns getting the right therapy to the right patient at the right time,” says Professor Ringborg. “But before we can get there, we need to do a great deal of research since the range of possible tumours and therapies is vast. No one research centre can have the resources needed. We must make sure that we coordinate and exploit the resources we have to the full.”
EurocanPlatform is a network of Europe’s 28 most research-intensive institutions in the field of cancer, of which the majority are clinical (patient-end), the remainder being engaged in basic research. A great many researchers from Sweden, Denmark, Norway, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Britain are involved in various parts of the project. The collaborative platform allows individual research groups and organisations to conduct studies they would not otherwise have the resources for; with the costs of expensive equipment, tumour material and competence shared.
“This enables researchers to collaborate and beat the negative effects of the growing cancer burden,” adds Professor Ringborg. “The ultimate winners will be the patients, the public and the healthcare services.”
More specifically, VHIO is participating in Work Package 6, Therapeutic Strategies, led by Thomas Tursz (Institut Gustave-Roussy, France), tasked with establishing structures for retrospective validation of biomarkers for choice of therapy and early clinical trials. Other key objectives include the prospective validation of the concept of tailored medicine as well as the establishment of a Steering Clinical Committee in order to run the activity of WP6.
To find out more about WP6 as well as VHIO´s involvement in the EurocanPlatform project please contact Alejandro Piris, Scientific Research Manager, VHIO via email: email@example.com.
For all the latest news about the EurocanPlatform visit: www.eurocanplatform.eu.