Dr Ciaran Fairmichael win’s first prize for SPORT study presentation

Dr Ciaran Fairmichael

The Queen’s University School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences Postgraduate Research Forum was on 9th November at Riddel Hall. The early results from the SPORT trial were presented by Dr Ciaran Fairmichael as a poster which was selected for oral presentation and went on to win 1st prize. The poster describes the early results from the trial which is co-ordinated by the NICTN. The results presented suggest there is benefit in combining stereotactic prostate radiotherapy, a technique that allows delivery of prostate radiotherapy in only 5 treatments instead of the usual 20-37 days of treatment, with an injected spacer gel to protect the lower bowel. Translational work within the trial looking at blood biomarkers to test for early signs of radiation toxicity was also presented.

Congratulations Ciaran!

Ed Goodall reports from ESMO

Dr. Ed Goodall

Northern Ireland Cancer Research Forum (NICRCF) member, Ed Goodall, was elected in 2018 to the Patient Advisory Committee (PAC) of the Europacolon organisation which incorporates researchers and healthcare professionals from nearly 40 countries. They held their recent October meeting in Munich in conjunction with ESMO (The European Society for Medical Oncology) at the MesseGrande Conference Centre, constructed on the site of the old Oberwiesenfeld airport.

Angel of Peace

 

A main focus of the meeting was the strategic use of Biosimilars which companies are allowed to make when the patent of the original medicine expires. They are usually able to produce and sell the Biosimilar more cheaply than the original reference medicines. Thus, they are appealing for Healthcare systems and may help to improve access to important medicines for cancer patients and, in particular, for those with metastatic colorectal cancer. A further important discussion concentrated on a strategic policy in Europe for routine screening and the optimal age at which it should be offered. The consensus appeared to be at 50 years of age and supported by more informative publicity campaigns which had been successful in some EC countries. In conclusion, Ed Goodall commented, ‘I left Munich, its Chocolate Box Centre dominated by the golden statuette of the Angel of Peace pointing heavenwards, buzzing with new ideas and inspired to renew efforts to finally defeat our old enemy, cancer.’