CTRT support is essential to allow us to run a comprehensive program of clinical trials for patients with melanoma and renal cancer. This allows our patients access to the most modern treatments. The research team is led by Dr. Paul Nathan (melanoma and renal cancer), Dr Heather Shaw (melanoma) and Dr Anand Sharma (renal cancer). Our two full time research nurses (Ange Smith and Simona Linwood) and three study coordinators Christiana Groutides, Jabir Merali and Rowena Sahabandu run all aspects of clinical trials from patient care to data management. 80% of their salaries are covered by charitable funds and commercial trial income, only one salary is received from the national cancer research network. Our patients therefore have access to the most innovative treatments because of the generosity of contributors to CTRT.
Donations to CTRT that stipulate use for the melanoma and renal teams will only be used to support research in the areas the donor desires.
CTRT supports a research session for Dr.Veronique Bataille, a consultant dermatologist who has a major scientific interest in the genetics of melanoma and predisposing factors of the disease. The influence of the gut microbiome on outcome in patients receivingimmunotherapy is an area of significant major international interest. We are part of acollaborative group headed by Prof Tim Spector at Kings College that has attracted funding toinvestigate the impact of gut microbial diversity on outcome in melanoma patients receiving mmunotherapy.
We have appointed a research fellow, Dr Karla Lee, to help deliver the project. Dr Lee has registered for a PhD at Kings College and is half- funded by CTRT for a 3 year period
starting September 2018. Dr Bataille has led the development of the microbiome project. PRIMM, a biomarker sub-study of the project, has been adopted onto the NCRN national portfolio. leads research projects on skin phenotype in patients with high risk and metastatic melanoma and a second project analysing the association of the microbiome (gut bacteria) with clinical outcome in melanoma. CTRT have also provided a grant to enable our outgoing research fellow, Dr.Romaana Mir, to perform an analysis of the clinical impact of surveillance scanning in high risk melanoma and audit outcomes for patients with brain metastases treated with stereotactic radiotherapy. Both studies have been submitted for publication.
Our renal cancer clinical trial portfolio continues to grow. Patients now have the opportunity to access clinical trials in the adjuvant (following surgery) and advanced disease settings. Many of our studies are attempting to identify improved ways to stimulate an effective immune response to the cancer in an attempt to gain long term control of the disease. Dr Sharma is lead investigator on a novel treatment that looks to disrupt the metabolism of renal cancer cells.