News headlines claiming breakthroughs in cancer research have become commonplace, and there is no doubt that many new treatments introduced over the past decade have improved survival and quality of life for cancer patients. So much more is needed however. Clinical Trials bridge the gap between the test tube and the clinic, to prove the worth of these new strategies in real people. The Patricia Ritchie Centre for Cancer Care and Research has an active and varied clinical trials program, and we encourage you to ask your Doctor or nurse if one of our studies is an option for you.
Participation in international clinical trials evaluating new drugs for the treatment of cancer may offer our patients access to new therapies not yet available in Australia. In addition we plan and undertake studies aimed to improve quality of life during and following treatment with the goal of improving the experience and outcome for all cancer patients.
Mrs Patricia Ritchie holds the strong belief that the key to successful treatment is clinical research. Sharing the knowledge gained with others will advance the care of cancer patients worldwide.
Our clinical trials staff work along with your oncologist and nurses to support you during your treatment. They are available to assist you with treatment planning and follow up as well as collecting vital data during your trial participation. All our research studies have been approved by the Research Ethics Committee of St Vincent’s and Mater Health, Sydney and will safeguard your privacy and safety at all times.
Further Information on clinical trials
Visit the Australian Cancer Trials website
Examples of Current Trials
ANZ 0802 / CIRG / TRIO 012 : TRIO-012
A new experimental drug (known as IMC-1121B) has been shown to prevent the growth of new blood vessels, which feed the cancer cells, and thereby shrink tumours. This study aims to investigate how effective and safe this new experimental drug is at treating the breast cancer cells that have returned. One half of patients will receive a standard chemotherapy drug called docetaxel. The other half of patients will receive docetaxel plus this new drug.
IBCSG 35-07 / BIG 1-07 : SOLE - Study Of Letrozole Extension
There is evidence confirming that hormonal treatment with drugs known as aromatase inhibitors (like letrozole) are effective in preventing breast cancer from returning. However, the optimal duration or schedule for this treatment is not currently known. 4800 patients who have already completed 4-6 years of hormonal treatment will take part in SOLE, an international randomised clinical trial, and will receive hormonal treatment with the drug letrozole for a further 5 years. This trial will determine if introducing a treatment gap of 3 months every year, for 5 years has any benefit over continuous treatment for 5 years.
ANZ 0501 : LATER - Later adjuvant Aromatase inhibitor Therapy for postmenopausal women with Endocrine Responsive breast cancer
For a woman who has had breast cancer and completed her treatment, there is still a substantial ongoing risk of her developing another breast cancer, or her original breast cancer returning. For these women, that chance can be up to 1 in 25 per year. The purpose of the ANZ 0501 / LATER study is to find out whether taking the drug letrozole can prevent or delay recurrence of breast cancer; or prevent new breast cancers from developing in postmenopausal women who have previously been treated for breast cancer with a minimum of 4 years hormonal therapy. It is known that letrozole is effective if taken after diagnosis or soon after hormonal therapy.