To mark our 15th anniversary we look back and celebrate key research achievements that are helping scientists, clinicians, and surgeons to gain a better understanding of the causes of primary bone cancer and to find more effective treatments.
PATIENT SAMPLE COLLECTION
Patient samples are an invaluable resource for researchers. Our Infrastructure Grants have enabled the five bone cancer surgical centres in England to approach patients, obtain consent and collect primary bone cancer specimens for research.
WHOLE GENOME SEQUECING
The 100,000 genomes project aimed to gain a better understanding of rare diseases and cancers, to potentially identify their cause and find new treatments. Our Infrastructure Grants made possible the inclusion of primary bone cancer patient samples in the study. All sarcoma tumour samples will now be submitted to NHS England for whole genome sequencing.
COMPUTER NAVIGATION ASSISTED SURGERY
We funded the initial investigations to assess the efficacy of computer guided pelvic surgery. The results have now confirmed significantly better outcomes in local control and progression-free survival for chondrosarcoma patients.
PROTON BEAM THERAPY PROTOCOLS
We funded a clinical fellowship to establish the protocols and assess intensity modulated radiotherapy and proton beam radiotherapy for bone cancer patients. Proton beam therapy is now available for bone cancer patients at the Christie NHS Foundation Trust.
COMBINATION OF DNA REPAIR INHIBITORS WITH RADIO AND CHEMOTHERAPY
PARP inhibitors potentiate the DNA damage caused by chemotherapy and radiotherapy, increasing their efficacy and reducing resistance. We funded research projects that collected preclinical evidence for the inclusion of Ewing sarcoma patients into current clinical trials investigating the efficacy of PARP inhibitors in combination with other chemotherapeutic agents.
NOVEL BIOMARKERS FOR DIAGNOSIS AND MONITORING
We have funded researchers investigating novel markers for better diagnosis, monitoring progression and response to treatment. Analysis of gene and protein expression, circulating tumour DNA and circulating tumour cells is now becoming a reality for bone cancer patients.
ICONIC aims to recruit every newly diagnosed patient with osteosarcoma, to build the UK’s first ever age inclusive osteosarcoma clinical trial - combining clinical data with tissue collection and analysis. ICONIC brings together patients, health professionals, clinical and scientific experts, with the aim of achieving better treatments and outcomes for osteosarcoma patients. It has now become a model to follow for setting up observational clinical trials.
To find out more about our research strategy, completed and current research projects, click below.