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ChristianaCare’s cancer center named a national leader in cancer clinical trials


Wilmington – For its outstanding patient participation rate in cancer clinical trials, ChristianaCare’s Helen F. Graham Cancer Center and Research Institute has earned top national rankings from several organizations of the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

ChristianaCare’s Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute. | PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRISTIANACARE

ChristianaCare’s patient participation rate into cancer clinical trials each year is nearly 30% – more than seven times the national average of 4%.

During the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020, ChristianaCare’s research team rose to the challenge to continue to enroll patients safely into cancer clinical trials.

The latest top rankings are from the National Cancer Institute’s NRG Oncology Research Group. On Jan, 29 NRG Oncology ranked the Graham Cancer Center No. 1 for the period 2017-2020 among 46 National Cancer Institute Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) sites. The ranking is for clinical trials under the NCI’s Division of Cancer Prevention Program.

For the same 2017-2020 period, NRG Oncology ranked the Graham Cancer Center No. 3 for trials under a different organization, NCI’s Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program.

NRG Oncology is one of five U.S. research groups participating in NCI’s National Clinical Trials Network and leads clinical trials at NCORP sites. NCI’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Cancer Therapy Evaluation programs sponsor different kinds of cancer clinical trials at NCORP sites.

Additionally, the Wake Forest NCORP Research Base in October 2020 recognized the Graham Cancer Center for achieving the 2nd highest participation rate out of 94 nationwide sites participating in its research program. And the Graham Cancer Center was awarded a Certificate of Commendation for its high patient participation rate from the ECOG-ACRIN Cancer Research Group, another member of NCI’s National Clinical Trials Network.

“Congratulations to our physicians and the entire research team for this national recognition and the tremendous accomplishments that we have been able to maintain, not just during the COVID-pandemic, but for multiple years,” said Dr. Nicholas J. Petrelli medical director of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute, in a statement. “Their unwavering commitment to research broadens opportunities for our patients to participate safely in the latest and most promising cancer treatments without leaving Delaware.”

In 2020, the Graham Cancer Center diagnosed 3,265 new cases of cancer. At the same time, more than 960 patients were enrolled in clinical trials for cancer prevention, treatment and cancer control.

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