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U.S. National Institutes of Health
Last Updated: 08/04/14

MRTB — Working Groups

Brain Metastasis in Breast Cancer

Chairperson: Minesh Mehta, M.B.Ch.B., F.A.S.T.R.O.

The Brain Metastases in Breast Cancer Working Group is an ad-hoc, unfunded working group charged with stimulating translational research and assisting in the development of clinical trial ideas for breast cancer patients with brain metastases. The group meets through WebEx approximately once a month and includes diverse expertise from basic scientists to a variety of clinical disciplines involved in the management of brain metastases patients, or instrumental to the conduct of clinical trials in this arena. The primary objectives of this group therefore are to:

  1. Serve as a common platform and forum for the discussion of various pre-clinical translational ideas with a high likelihood of being developed into clinical trial concepts, including evaluation of conventional Phase I-II endpoints, but also including development of novel endpoints, including compartmental disease control, novel imaging, and patient reported outcomes including quality of life, and neurocognitive function.

  2. Collaborate with individual institutions, industry partners, consortia, and co-operative groups to help conduct clinical concepts.

  3. Assist the NCI disease-specific and other working groups specifically in terms of evaluating concepts for brain metastases from breast cancer.

Colorectal Cancer

Chairperson: Thomas J. George, M.D., F.A.C.P.

The Colorectal Working Group (WG) is an active committee with a goal of strategically fostering the rational development of novel radiation sensitizers to eradicate or palliate human colorectal cancer. The WG represents a multidisciplinary and diverse partnership between the NCI-sponsored National Clinical Trial Network (particularly NRG Oncology), the NCI Extramural Radiation Research Program, the Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program (CTEP), industry and global academic partners. Members participate in regular strategic planning meetings, collaborative projects and educational content aimed to link the pre-clinical scientific models with the clinical validation of enhanced agent activity in biomarker selected and non-selected colorectal cancer patient subgroups. Pragmatic interaction with other Working Groups ensures that common biologic principles and opportunities for synergistic collaboration are optimized.

Head and Neck Cancer

Coming soon – Content to be added soon.

Lung Cancer

Chairperson: Bo Lu, M.D.
Co/Chair: Steven H. Lin, M.D., Ph.D.

Lung Cancer Working Group is an ad-hoc, unfunded working group, which consists of NCI-funded researchers with expertise and interests in lung cancer research and assisting in the development of novel clinical trial for lung cancer patients. The group meets through WebEx approximately once a month and includes diverse expertise from basic scientists to a variety of clinical disciplines involved in the management of lung cancer patients, or instrumental to the conduct of clinical trials. The primary objectives of this group are to:

1. Serve as a common platform and forum for the discussion of various pre-clinical translational ideas with a high likelihood of being developed into clinical trial concepts. Emphasis will be placed upon novel biology, targets, imaging, biomarkers, physics, technology, QA and clinical trial design.

2. Collaborate among individual institutions, industry partners and co-operative groups to help to advance clinical trial concepts.

A few initiatives include:

  1. Multiple therapeutic targets with overlapping drug compounds require group consensus and efforts. Standardized preclinical testing will allow data comparison among the participating laboratories from different institutions.
  2. Collaborate with the NCI relative to its access to various novel agents, and developing clinical trials incorporating such agents.
  3. Translate laboratory science toward clinical trials of combining radiotherapy and immunotherapy. Explore the potential systemic effect of radiotherapy.

Radiation and Immune Modulation

Chairperson: Samir N. Khleif, M.D.

Several studies have demonstrated that radiation can modulate and enhance immune responses to tumors. Hypofractionation or other modifications of standard fractionation may promote immune responses to tumors, but other novel delivery options may also affect several immune responses including T-cell activation and changes in tumor-antigen presentation. However, there is limited understanding of the immunologic impact of hypo- and special multi-fractionated radiotherapy, as these observations are relatively recent. This NCI working group will bring together clinicians and researchers with an interest in radiotherapy and/or immunology to open a dialogue on the potential for exploiting radiation-induced immune responses in the context of cancer therapy.

Sarcoma

Chairperson: Dian Wang, M.D.

The translational research program (TRP) in the Sarcoma Working Group is aimed at enhancing the translational aspect of research in sarcoma for which the current priority is to identify new agents that sensitize sarcoma to radiotherapy for clinical trials development. As sarcomas are histologically diverse and may originate from any anatomical site, the TRP team consists of fundamental scientists and clinicians specialized in different sites and disciplines involved in the management of sarcoma patients to optimize its ability to convert basic research to clinical trials in this arena. Meetings are held through WebEx approximately every other month, during which the primary objectives are the sarcoma working group TRP discussed:

  1. To serve as a platform and forum for the discussion of various pre-clinical translational ideas with a high likelihood of being developed into clinical trial concepts.
  2. Evaluation and development of clinically important endpoints for phase I-II trials, such as compartmental disease control, biomarker response and novel imaging surrogates signals of treatment response.
  3. Facilitate the collaboration between individual institutions, industry partners, consortia, and co-operative groups in the development and design of clinical concepts.
  4. Assist NCI disease-specific committees and other working groups in evaluating concepts related to sarcoma.