Posted On: September 02, 2018
Learn about the world’s most comprehensive child cancer personalised medicine studies taking place in the heart of Sydney.
Zero Childhood Cancer is one of the world’s most comprehensive child cancer personalised medicine studies and is led by Children’s Cancer Institute and the Kids Cancer Centre at Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick, in collaboration with scientists from nineteen leading Australian and international research institutes and doctors from all eight of Australia’s paediatric cancer centres.
More than 200 children and adolescents in Australia will be diagnosed in 2018 with a cancer type that has less than 30 per cent survival, either on first diagnosis or after relapsing from their disease.
The Zero Childhood Cancer program recognises that each child’s cancer is unique, so they respond differently to anti-cancer treatment. Detailed laboratory analysis of tumour samples will help identify the drugs most likely to kill each child’s specific cancer.
Zero Childhood Cancer will mean that children with the most aggressive or relapsed cancer will have their tumour samples sent to the laboratories at Children’s Cancer Institute, where the researchers will leverage the most innovative research, technology, and tests, to more precisely analyse the genetic makeup of each individual child’s cancer, and the response of their cancer to hundreds of anticancer drugs.
Read more: Personalised Medicine: Zero Childhood Cancer.
This will enable identification of the precise drug or drugs that have the greatest likelihood of being effective against each child’s individual cancer and so, through this personalised treatment, give each child the best chance of survival, with the fewest side effects.
For that very reason, The Kids’ Cancer Project have funded the Zero Childhood Cancer program for the past four years. Support amounting to more than $1.1 million has been committed to 2021. The program is directly aligned to the charity’s vision of one hundred percent survival of children with cancer while eradicating the harmful impacts treatment can bring.
How the trial works
Each fortnight a Multi-Disciplinary Tumour Board meets, comprising of clinicians from around Australia together with scientists, bioinformaticians, geneticists, pathologists and biologists to review the complex information from the sophisticated Zero Childhood Cancer testing platform and recommend a personalised treatment plan for each individual child.
The Zero Childhood Cancer national clinical trial will recruit 400 children nationally over a 3-year period. In addition to benefitting children on the clinical trial, Zero Childhood Cancer will mean that the knowledge and understanding of these aggressive cancers at a molecular level, will be shared with collaborators and partners nationally and internationally to benefit all children with cancer in the future. Thus, the data gathered will enable evidence-based treatment options in the present, also building a powerful research repository for the future, enabling further discoveries to flow from the trial.
The program is free to children who meet the clinical trial enrolment criteria and enrolment is through their treating oncologist. The trial is sponsored by the Australian and New Zealand Children’s Haematology/Oncology Group.
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