On the 19th October, Cancer Research Technology (CRT) and the CRUK Centre for Drug Development (CRUK CDD) came together to host a workshop to discuss the complexities and opportunities within anti-metastatic drug development.
“Metastases of tumours to distal sites are frequently associated with poor patient prognosis and there is an urgent requirement for novel treatment strategies. Substantial efforts are being made to develop novel agents, with Cancer Research UK funding, that target tissue invasion and metastasis. Several projects have been successful and agents have been identified with robust pre-clinical data. However, progress for the clinical development of these agents is hindered by the lack of appropriate clinical trial paradigms to evaluate these agents, with robust endpoints and furthermore engagement of the pharmaceutical industry is limited. Conversely, despite these challenges, the benefits to the cancer patient that could potentially be achieved are considerable.” Dr Christopher Ireson, project development manager, CRT.
Chaired by Dr Pat Steeg (US National Cancer Institute) and Dr Rob Jones (Glasgow University), the workshop included national and international experts from industry, academia and regulatory sectors. Discussions covered topics ranging from discovery science, preclinical model systems and biomarker development, through to clinical trial and regulatory strategies, and potential pathways to market.
‘A clear message from this workshop is that we face a huge breadth of challenges within this field, but an equivalent scope to make a real impact on patient survival. By establishing this multi-disciplinary collaborative effort, we have taken the first practical steps in building a consensus development strategy for experimental medicines that have an anti-metastatic mechanism of action.’ Dr James Ritchie, drug development scientist, CRUK CDD.
With approximately 35 participants from three continents, key questions and challenges were addressed thanks to the diverse skill set of the participants. The next steps for the recently formed consortium include refinement of the concepts discussed at the workshop and publication of recommendations in an international journal in 2016.
View Dr Pat Steeg's talk 'Can Brain Metastasis of Breast Cancer be Prevented?' here.
For more information, including how to join this consortium, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org