National Comprehensive Cancer Network

About NCCN

NCCN Receives $1.5 Million Grant to Research Targeted Therapy in Bladder Cancer


NCCN has been awarded a $1.5 Million grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and ImClone Systems Incorporated to fund research on the antibody cetuximab in patients with bladder cancer. The novel targeted therapy has proven effective in various other types of cancer including colorectal and head and neck. The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center is the coordinating center for the study.


November 24, 2008

FORT WASHINGTON, PA — The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and ImClone Systems Incorporated have entered into a collaboration to conduct a multi-institutional, investigator-initiated study in bladder cancer using cetuximab (ERBITUX®, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company/ImClone Systems Incorporated). The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center is the coordinating center for the study supported by a $1.5 Million grant.

Cetuximab is currently indicated either as a single agent or in combination for the treatment of patients who have metastatic colorectal cancer. It is also approved for the treatment of a certain type of locally or regionally advanced head and neck cancer.

“In this age of targeted therapies, it is important to explore possible new uses of agents supported by science,” says William T. McGivney, PhD, Chief Executive Officer, NCCN. “Through this grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and ImClone Systems Incorporated, we continue to provide NCCN Member Institutions with opportunities for funding of innovative cancer research, while supporting our overall mission to improve patient survival and quality of life.”

Cetuximab is an antibody that targets and binds to the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), a protein found at abnormally high levels on the surface of many types of cancer cells. By binding to the EGFR on the cancer cells, cetuximab blocks the attachment of molecules that trigger the cell to grow and multiply.

“Targeting the EGFR is a validated approach to treat cancer and holds promise to improve the current results of bladder cancer treatment as EGFR biology is quite relevant in this tumor type,” says Eric K. Rowinsky, MD, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, ImClone Systems Incorporated. “We are pleased to support this important research that has the potential for far-reaching effects given that bladder cancer has an unusually high rate of recurrence.”

Bladder cancer is the fifth most common type of cancer in the United States with an estimated 68,810 new cases diagnosed in 2008.

The NCCN Oncology Research Program (ORP) facilitates all phases of clinical research by identifying clinical investigators and initiating trials at NCCN Member Institutions. The ORP draws on the expertise of investigators at 21 of the world’s leading cancer centers and establishes collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies in order to advance therapeutic options for patients with cancer.

About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 25 of the world's leading cancer centers, is dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care provided to patients with cancer. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops resources that present valuable information to the numerous stakeholders in the health care delivery system. As the arbiter of high-quality cancer care, NCCN promotes the importance of continuous quality improvement and recognizes the significance of creating clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers. The primary goal of all NCCN initiatives is to improve the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of oncology practice so patients can live better lives. For more information, visit NCCN.org.

The NCCN Member Institutions are:

  • Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center at The Nebraska Medical Center
  • City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center
    Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
  • Duke Cancer Institute
  • Fox Chase Cancer Center
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah
  • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center / Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
  • The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins
  • Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University
  • Mayo Clinic Cancer Center
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Moffitt Cancer Center
  • The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute
  • Roswell Park Cancer Institute
  • Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine
  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • Stanford Cancer Institute
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
  • UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • University of Colorado Cancer Center
  • University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
  • Yale Cancer Center/Smilow Cancer Hospital