The group launched a second round of funding, designed help evaluate minimally invasive, image-guided therapies that use the body’s own immune system to treat cancer.
The program is specifically looking to fund proposals that assess how interventional oncologic therapies stimulate the immune system and how combination therapies can boost clinical outcomes. BTG and SIO also said they would consider applications that focus on understanding how loco-regional therapies shape adaptive and innate immunity in cancer patients.
In June, SIO announced the first round of grant recipients at the World Conference on Interventional Oncology in Boston. Those four proposals included both exploratory projects and prospective clinical trials.
“We are very pleased with the ongoing generosity of BTG that will continue to enable the SIO to fund additional meritorious, cutting-edge research that combines the strengths of interventional oncology and immuno-oncology — two disciplines that hold great promise for improving cancer therapy,” Dr. Nahum Goldberg, chair of the SIO interventional /immuno-oncology working group, said in prepared remarks.
“We were delighted by the number of high caliber entries we saw from investigators in response to the original call for proposals, with lots of brilliant ideas of how to best combine loco-regional and immunotherapies,” BTG chief scientific officer Melanie Lee added. “We believe such approaches can help new agents to penetrate solid tumour mass, expose tumour specific antigens, and help the immune system to mount a response. Given the high levels of interest, we have decided to double our efforts and provide further funding in 2018 to support additional research in this area.”