New pilot funding awarded by the Bone Cancer Research Trust will enable scientists to continue their research in the fight against bone cancer.
Dr Paul Huang, team leader at the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) in London, will receive a grant to analyse patient samples to see if they can identify patients who are likely to benefit from two anti-cancer drugs, regorafenib and levatinib.
This will complement funding that Dr Huang has received from The Little Princess Trust and will provide preliminary data to show whether the gene expression classifier developed by the Huang laboratory (KARSARC) can be used to predict responsiveness to these treatments in Ewing sarcoma patients.
The overarching theme of Dr Huang's work is to identify biological signatures in Ewing sarcoma which can help predict treatment response or risk of aggressive disease prior to starting treatment.
This will involve:
- A pilot study of biobanked samples obtained from patients with newly-diagnosed and metastatic Ewing sarcoma to identify these biological markers.
- A pilot evaluation to determine if these signatures can be used to predict response to regorafenib or levatinib in Ewing sarcoma patients enrolled in the rEECur and INTER-EWING-1 clinical trials.
Dr Zoe Davison, Head of Research, Information & Support at the Bone Cancer Research Trust, said:
The Bone Cancer Research Trust and The Little Princess Trust share the same aim of developing kinder and more effective treatments to improve outcomes for future Ewing sarcoma patients. This will only be achieved through the development of desperately needed personalised treatments via clinical trials, and this is why we're delighted to award complementary funding to Paul Huang at the Institute of Cancer Research.
Phil Brace, CEO of The Little Princess Trust, said:
It is fantastic to hear that Paul has received further funding from the Bone Cancer Research Trust. Cancer research is a multi-stage process, and progress is only possible through the continued support of funders like The Little Princess Trust and the Bone Cancer Research Trust. Continued funding in cancer research is vital as it fuels breakthroughs, drives clinical trials, and accelerates the development of promising treatments. We hope that Paul's projects will help Ewing sarcoma patients get the treatment they need sooner, ultimately saving more young lives.
Aims of the project
- Identify biological markers or signatures which can help predict treatment response or risk of aggressive disease that might mean standard chemotherapy may not be effective.
- Test whether the gene expression classified developed by the Huang laboratory (KARSARC) can be used to predict which patients will respond to regorafenib and levatinib,
How will this research benefit bone cancer patients?
By enabling doctors to identify patients with tumours who are likely to benefit from specific treatments, we hope to tailor and optimise treatment that patients receive to maximise their chances of survival.
This project will begin to explore the possibility of predicting how patients with Ewing sarcoma will respond to certain drugs.
Ultimately, the long-term hope of research in this area is to provide tools that allow doctors to personalise therapy and ensure that regorafenib and levatinib are used effectively to improve outcomes for Ewing sarcoma patients,
Find out more about this research project below: