National Comprehensive Cancer Network

About NCCN

Researchers Receive Grants from NCCN Oncology Research Program Funded Through Pfizer


The NCCN Oncology Research Program received $2.1 million in research funding from Pfizer, Inc. to support research at NCCN Member Institutions in order to gain further insight into the use of axitinib in various tumor types.


FORT WASHINGTON, PA — The National Comprehensive Cancer Network®`s (NCCN®`s) Oncology Research Program (ORP) recently awarded research grants to investigators following a review of proposals submitted in response to the NCCN Axitinib Request for Proposals. These grants were made possible through general research support of $2.1 million from Pfizer, Inc. Researchers will evaluate and define the clinical activity of axitinib in various tumor types. The projects being funded through the research grants encompass innovative approaches to better understand and treat several types of cancer, including head and neck, adenoid cystic, and carcinoid cancers, and melanoma.

Axitinib is an oral and selective inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) receptors 1, 2 and 3, which can influence tumor growth, vascular angiogenesis, and progression of cancer. Axitinib is an investigational agent and has not been approved by regulatory agencies.

In addition to the 52 active clinical and correlative trials that we are already supporting, NCCN is pleased to announce that we will be funding four new important axitinib research studies in 2011, commented Diane Paul, MS, RN, Vice President, Oncology Research Program. The commitment of Pfizer to once again form a research collaboration with NCCN enables us to continue advancing cancer research at a time when other funding sources are shrinking. We are grateful for this opportunity to work with them again to make important strides in research possible.

The following proposals have been awarded funding:

The awardees responded to a Request for Proposal (RFP) issued by the NCCN ORP to the 21 NCCN Member Institutions. All submissions were peer reviewed by the NCCN Axitinib Scientific Review Committee (SRC), and the awardees were selected based on several key components, including scientific merit, existing data, and the types of studies necessary to further evaluate the activity of axitinib in solid tumors.

We are delighted that our support of NCCN is enabling such high quality clinical and translation research to be conducted on axitinib. We are hopeful that this work will result in greater insight and understanding of this important new investigational agent, said Dr. Mace Rothenberg, Senior Vice President of Clinical Development and Medical Affairs for Pfizer`s Oncology Business Unit. At a time of extraordinary scientific opportunity, Pfizer Oncology, like NCCN, shares a common vision that collaboration will ultimately move cancer research forward in innovative ways and lessen the burden of cancer for patients worldwide.

The NCCN Oncology Research Program (ORP) draws on the expertise of investigators at NCCN Member Institutions to facilitate all phases of clinical research. This research is made possible by collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies in order to advance therapeutic options for patients with cancer. The NCCN ORP will utilize the grant from Pfizer to support investigator-initiated clinical and correlative studies at its NCCN Member Institutions for axitinib. To date, this successful research model has received more than $30 million in research grants and provided 87 investigators with funding for clinical and correlative trials that have produced numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals.

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