New UNC gastrointestinal cancer clinical trials funded

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center has received a two-year, $125,000 grant to support clinical trials in gastrointestinal (GI) cancers.

The center is one of eight institutions in the U.S. to receive such grants, funded by the Aptium Oncology GI Consortium. The consortium aims to draw on the expertise of gastrointestinal cancer specialists to design faster, more efficient clinical trials and identify new drugs that are effective in relatively uncommon malignancies.

Bert O’Neil, M.D., associate professor of medicine and co-leader of Lineberger’s gastrointestinal oncology program, is principal investigator of the grant.

O’Neil said membership of the consortium will allow UNC to bring a number of new agents to patients with malignancies such as stomach, liver and pancreatic cancer that have been relatively underserved by clinical trials.

Other member institutions are: University of Southern California/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Los Angeles, Calif.; Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Nashville, Tenn.; University of Colorado Cancer Center, Denver, Colo..; New York University’s Langone Medical Center, N.Y.; Fox Chase Cancer Center Partners, Philadelphia, Pa.; the Swedish Cancer Institute, Seattle, Wash.; and Christiana Care’s Helen F. Graham Cancer Center in Newark, Del.

Note:  O’Neil can be reached at (919) 966-4431.

UNC Lineberger contact: Dianne Shaw (919) 966-5905,
News Services contact: Patric Lane, (919) 962-8596,

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