THE WOODLANDS, Texas and PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- US Oncology Research, one of the nation's largest networks of community-based researchers, and Radiation Therapy Oncology Group® (RTOG®), the leader in radiation oncology-focused clinical trials in the United States, announced today that US Oncology Research has earned Full Member status, an accomplishment few institutions achieve. As a Full Member of RTOG, US Oncology Research has proven to be a leader in radiation clinical trials. US Oncology Research is one of fewer than 50 organizations to reach this elite status.
Since becoming an Affiliate Member of RTOG in 2008, US Oncology Research quickly became one of the top accruing members, with its network of oncology practices eventually enrolling more patients in RTOG trials than any other member. In 2010, RTOG announced that US Oncology Research ranked number one in patient accruals, surpassing all affiliate and full RTOG members. All together, network physicians have enrolled 163 patients into RTOG clinical trials held at community-based oncology practices, allowing patients to receive cutting-edge radiation clinical trials in their hometowns close to their friends and family.
"US Oncology Research has been an outstanding Affiliate Member, and we're excited to award the network Full Member status. We at RTOG are very pleased that US Oncology Research achieved full member status as quickly as they did," said Walter J Curran, Jr., M.D., chairman, RTOG Group Chairman and Executive Director of the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University. "Their commitment to providing the infrastructure to accrue large numbers of patients into clinical trial research from community-based practices will not only benefit their patients, it will also help us answer our research questions faster, and that will benefit all cancer patients."
Radiation oncology-focused clinical trials are cutting-edge, offer cancer patients integrated and unique therapies that can provide a better chance for survival. Because of US Oncology Research and RTOG, these trials are now found more frequently in a community setting. Clinical trials in cancer care, whether focused on chemotherapy, radiation or other methods of treatment, seek to improve upon standard treatment, so each patient has the best opportunity for a positive outcome.
"We are making great strides in a concentration that is quite unique," said Vivek Kavadi, M.D., medical director of Radiation Oncology for US Oncology and radiation oncologist with Texas Oncology-Sugar Land, a practice participating in US Oncology Research. "Having radiation oncology clinical trials available in local communities is crucial for our patients. They are able to participate in integrated, radiation-focused clinical trials that are truly state-of-the-art."
There are 19 RTOG approved sites affiliated with US Oncology Research. These community-based practices are located across the country and had 91 accruals in 2010. With an average of eight accruals per month, US Oncology Research is living up to its mission of advancing cancer care in America.
In order to remain an RTOG Full Member, US Oncology Research must be evaluated yearly by the RTOG Membership Evaluation Committee according to the RTOG Membership Evaluation Policy and the Group Bylaws.
About US Oncology Research
US Oncology Research draws from a network of experienced investigators and dedicated clinical staff who specialize in Phase I through Phase IV oncology clinical trials. US Oncology Research serves more than 90 sites in 200 locations managing more than 200 active trials at any given time. Physicians in the research network have enrolled more than 48,800 patients in more than 1,170 trials since inception in 1992 and have contributed to the development of 43 cancer therapies approved by the FDA. For more information call (866) 216-5053 or visit www.usoncology.com/oncologists.
About Radiation Therapy Oncology Group
Radiation Therapy Oncology Group is a dynamic multidisciplinary group with vigorous participation by physicians and other researchers from more than 350 of the leading academic and community medical facilities in the United States, Canada and internationally, including nearly 90 percent of all NCI-designated cancer centers and many of the major academic and regional centers of Canada. This participation includes leadership from medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, pathologists, and laboratory scientists as well radiation oncologists. All Group research efforts seek to be transformational in nature, with the goal of improving the quantity and quality of survival of cancer patients. For more information, visit www.RTOG.org.
For 40 years, Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) has been a recognized leader in working to increase survival and improve the quality of life for cancer patients through high-quality radiation-focused clinical trials. Based in Philadelphia, RTOG is a key clinical research component of the American College of Radiology (ACR) and serves as a multi-institutional, international clinical cooperative group funded primarily by the National Cancer Institute.
Since its inception, RTOG has activated 460 protocols, accrued approximately 90,000 patients, and published more than 800 papers.
RTOG investigators maintain a roster of 40 active studies devoted to the group's primary disease sites:
- central nervous system
- head and neck
US Oncology Research is the largest RTOG member of its kind in offering RTOG trials to patients in the community setting.
In less than three years as an Affiliate Member of RTOG, US Oncology Research has enrolled 163 patients into RTOG clinical trials held at community-based oncology practices:
- 18 patients enrolled in 2008
- 54 patients enrolled in 2009
- 91 patients enrolled in 2010
The US Oncology Network is a leader in community cancer care, supporting a network that treats more than 850,000 patients a year. US Oncology Research has played a role in the development of 43 FDA approved cancer therapies and remains committed to increasing patient access to advanced therapies.
SOURCE US Oncology Research; Radiation Therapy Oncology Group