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A note to our donors

Almost 30 years ago, Irish doctors saw patients in the US availing of treatment options that simply were not available here.

To change that reality, a few oncologists formed Cancer Trials Ireland (formerly ICORG) in the 1990s with the specific intention of opening cancer trials so that they could get the latest potential lifesaving and life-extending treatments for their patients – treatments their patients could not access in any other way.

That was then, and is to this day, the fundamental reason for opening and conducting cancer trials in Ireland. They provide a way to give the newest, most innovative, most cutting-edge treatments to cancer patients that simply would not otherwise be available in this country.

By supporting us, you are enabling access to the best treatments in the world – and all without cost to the patients themselves, or to the State.

Science, not profit

Your money goes towards ‘academic-led’ trials (i.e. non-commercial trials) where the research questions are driven by patient need rather than commercial concerns.

The commercial model plays an essential role in modern medicines development, as the phenomenal response of the pharmaceutical and biotech industries to COVID has shown. But the academic-led approach allows for different kinds of scientific questions, like:

  • Could patients reap the same benefits of chemotherapy, or radiotherapy, if we used less treatment? Or:
  • Which well-established, long-standing treatment(s) is, or are, best for treating a specific form of breast, or prostate, or lung cancer?

These important questions are mainly asked by the not-for-profit research sector. Through the support of the Health Research Board, the Irish Cancer Society – and other generous donors – doctors in Ireland can open trials that have the potential to change how cancer is treated.

What we do

Our team of 60+ staff work across an array of teams to support cancer treating doctors, surgeons, research nurses, data managers and other healthcare professionals at 18 cancer trial sites all over Ireland.


We sponsor cancer trials – which is to say we take responsibility for ensuring that any trial we open in Ireland meets the legal requirements for conducting trials which in turn ensures continual medical oversight for the safety of the patients who participate in our trials.

We employ people dedicated to meeting regulatory and research ethics standards.

We continually train our staff and audit our processes against internationally recognised scientific and regulatory standards.

We have a pharmacovigilance team whose purpose is to track any side effects for patients on our trials– whether those events are trial-related or not – and ensure that relevant adverse effects are submitted to regulatory authorities as they occur, as well as providing periodic safety reports.

Our clinical team supports cancer-treating doctors and surgeons to develop research ‘protocols’ that will efficiently and effectively recruit patients and generate the data needed to answer the hypotheses (research questions) underpinning cancer trials. The same clinical team will shepherd the set-up of the trial, including obtaining the necessary regulatory authorisations and ethics committee approvals, before periodically visiting trial sites to ensure that a trial is operating precisely as directed in its protocol.

Meanwhile our biometrics team will work with the cancer-treating doctors and surgeons on the design and statistical methods used in the trial.  They set up and manage the database that gathers and analyses the data about the patient on the trial and collaborate with the clinical team and the hospital sites to ensure the completeness and accuracy of the data collected. At the close of the trial they analyse the final data to assess the outcome of the research questions of the trial and support the cancer-treating doctors and surgeons in the reporting of the results.

Our leadership, finance and communications teams work closely with our Board to ensure that the government, politicians, media – and people like you – understand the value of cancer trials, and see them not as diversions from patient care, but an essential part of it.

Thank you for helping to make all of this possible.  

There have been some fantastic advances made in the treatment of cancer in recent years. Ireland has played a significant role in these advances and is continuing to do so. Would you like to help us extend these advanced treatments to more Irish patients?

100% of all moneys donated are used to make clinical research options available for patients in Ireland.

If you donate €250 or more in total in any one year, Cancer Trials Ireland can reclaim tax paid at no extra cost to you.

If you would like Cancer Trials Ireland to avail of a tax reclaim please complete and sign the CH4 form available on the Revenue webpage regarding the Charitable Donation Scheme and send the completed form to Cancer Trials Ireland at the following address:

Finance Department, Cancer Trials Ireland, Ardilaun House, 4th Floor Block B, 111 St. Stephen’s Green , Dublin , D02 VN51

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