The GI Cancer Institute’s research and clinical trials are developed through a robust, scientific process. The studies we conduct are based on our strategic research priorities, which identify the areas of greatest need for patients. Our priorities include a focus on rare and underfunded cancers and areas where patients have few treatment options available. We also support innovative concepts that investigate areas that researchers have not previously investigated.
“Our key priority is always to improve patient outcomes and quality of life,” says Prof Tim Price, Chair of the GI Cancer Institute. “The results of our research build over time to give better treatment options to patients.”
Ideas for clinical trials and research are submitted through the GI Cancer Institute’s research network of medical members, a group of over 1,000 professionals throughout Australia and New Zealand. Our members include oncologists, researchers, surgeons and radiation oncologists as well as allied health professionals dedicated to improving GI cancer treatments.
Through clinical experience and discussions with patients, members identify areas for research that could benefit patients.
The Development Pathway
Members submit their ideas to our Working Parties for review. The GI Cancer Institute has two working parties. The Upper GI Working Party focuses on cancers of the oesophagus, gallbladder, pancreas, stomach, and liver. The Lower GI Working Party focuses on cancers of the small intestine, colon, rectum, and anus. The experts in our Working Parties come from a variety of disciplines. They give feedback on concepts and revise them to ensure they can provide the best outcomes possible, and the most useful evidence for future research.
Researchers also submit concepts through our Innovation Fund and the New Concepts Symposium at our Annual Scientific Meeting. Our expert selection committees choose outstanding research ideas that are submitted to be developed further.
Developing research concepts is a collaborative process that involves many iterations of research ideas. Every trial that we activated has gone through this rigorous feedback process to ensure that treatments options are always improving for patients. The evidence gained from this research builds over time, leading to large shifts in survival outcomes.
Continuing the cycle of research is the only way to ensure that survival rates continue to rise. There are always more questions to be answered. By continuing to develop research questions through our scientific committees and structures we are working to find the answers to improve the lives of patients with gastro-intestinal cancer.