The Irish Clinical Oncology Research Group (ICORG) a charity-based organisation founded in 1996 by Irish hospital doctors who treat cancer is pleased to announce Irelands most significant contribution ever to cancer clinical research.Between November 1998 and June of this year 190 Irish women with early breast cancer agreed to participate in an international study in the course of their treatment. The aim of this study was to determine whether the drug, taxotere used in the treatment of advanced breast cancer would be of benefit to patients with earlier stage disease.
Website to give access to clinical trials by Dr. Muiris Houston, Medical Correspondent
Cancer patients will be able to access the details of clinical trials with a view to participating in the latest research following the launch of an online search facility.
The Irish Clinical Oncology Research Group (ICORG), a charity-based organisation of doctors in Northern Ireland and the Republic, said its service will allow Irish cancer sufferers to access new treatments through participation in clinical trials.
Following a postal/fax ballot in December 2000, the ICORG executive for the 4 year term starting January 2001 is as follows:
The two constitutional amendments also on the ballot papers were also heavily supported but unfortunately not enough members voted to meet the 66% of current membership rule.
The executive have decided to put these two amendments to the membership again early in the new year and encourage all members to ensure they cast their vote.
Following discussions with the leaders of the Northern Ireland Clinical Trials Unit in March of this year and culminating with a meeting in May in Dublin, ICORG became an all-Ireland organisation. This resulted in an increase in the membership in recent months of 21 consultants from north of the border.
The ICORG membership has grown steadily since its inaugral roster of 32 back in October 1996 and is now 126. The recent growth has been due mainly to the addition of members from north of the border.
Following discussions with the Irish Cancer Society (ICS) in the early part of 2000, and representations made to the board on ICORGs behalf by John Crown, John Armstrong and John Kennedy the board of the society have decided to increase the ICORG central office annual funding substantially. The executive of ICORG are very grateful to the ICS for this essential support.
This study is an indication of what Irish investigators can achieve when they work together. It will be a unique achievement when completed in the final quarter of 2001. It will be an Irish designed study set up to answer an important clinical question fully completed in Ireland. In November of this year it enrolled its 200 patient, the target of 260 patients will be reached in the fourth quarter or earlier.
During the week of the 6th of November the 100th Irish Patient was enrolled into the B.I.G. node positive study. This is the first time that a multi-national oncology study has accrued 100 Irish patients and must auger well for the future of ICORG and oncology clinical research in Ireland. This achievement is all the more important in light of the fact that this is the first multi-national study that is co-chaired by ICORG. It will help strengthen the ICORG negotiation position when discussing future key projects with companies or collaborative groups. Study has been extended to 2700 patients (ending May 2001 approx.) Ireland has one of the best accrual rates in Europe. SVUH 2nd highest accruing site out of 188 sites worldwide.
ASCO abstracts (99 – Lung, 00 – 2 NHL)
ICORG is very proud to announce that the 97-03 lung study was chosen to be presented in poster format at ASCO 1999 in Atlanta, this is a considerable achievement in view of the fact that less than 100 abstracts were chosen out of a total of more than 600 submissions.