Dr Robert Jones is the clinical lead for early phase trials at Velindre Cancer Centre in Cardiff. He and his team are bringing the latest treatments to patients, and offering a new line of hope to many people with cancer.
Clinical trials play such a fundamental role in improving survival rates of cancer patients, as they allow patients access to the very latest cancer therapies. Further benefits with trials being held in Cardiff has been giving patients the opportunity to receive treatment closer to home, giving patients more time to spend with their families.
Dr Jones will be speaking at our upcoming event, Your cancer is not my cancer: is personalised medicine the future? on June 15 at the Royal Society of Medicine in London. He shares with us an insight into the early phase trials currently being undertaken at Cardiff University.
“We are linking drug development in the laboratory with patient care by performing phase 1 cancer trials where new drugs or drug combinations, which have shown promise in pre-clinical systems such as cell culture and mouse models, are given to patients for the first time.
“By taking tumour and blood samples from patients participating in such trials, and then performing genetic analysis on them, we are also trying to define specific characteristics which will help us determine who is more likely to gain benefit from specific therapeutic approaches. In this way we hope to better personalise future cancer treatments. By offering these trials in Cardiff for the very first time we can give patients, who often have very few or no remaining conventional treatment options, the chance to access cutting edge drugs in a local research unit.
“Expanding the number of trials available in Cardiff over the last three years has saved patients over 9000 hours of travel time (the equivalent of over 1 year of continuous travel) by avoiding the requirement to visit Phase 1 units in Oxford and London.”