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National Comprehensive Cancer Network

About NCCN

NCCN Receives $2 Million in Oncology Research Funding from Boehringer Ingelheim to Investigate Afatinib in Solid Tumors

Carrie Capili, Communications Specialist

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®)  Oncology Research Program (ORP) has been awarded a $2 million grant from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to develop a program to scientifically evaluate and define the clinical effectiveness of Afatinib (BIBW 2992) in solid tumors, including breast, head and neck, and non-small cell lung (NSCL) cancers.

“We are excited and grateful to Boehringer Ingelheim for the opportunity to collaborate on research for Afatinib. This research grant will support innovative studies to help scientists and clinicians find new directions to advance the field of oncology. Our collaboration will provide a forum for the open exchange of information to better define the clinical application for the use of Afatinib in a variety of cancer types,” stated Diane Paul, MS, RN, vice president, ORP, NCCN.

The first phase of the program will involve the establishment of an NCCN Afatinib Request for Proposals Development Team to evaluate existing data and to discuss and define the data and type of studies necessary to further characterize the clinical effectiveness of Afatinib in selected solid tumors.

Afatinib is an oral, once-daily, targeted investigational compound currently being investigated for various tumor types, such as NSCL, breast, head and neck, and colorectal cancers and glioblastoma. It is a next generation tyrosine kinase inhibitor, which is an irreversible inhibitor of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). Afatinib is currently in Phase III clinical development for NSCL and breast cancers.

The NCCN 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 biotechnology companies in order to advance therapeutic options for patients with cancer. The NCCN ORP will utilize the grant from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to support investigator-initiated clinical and correlative studies at its NCCN Member Institutions for Afatinib. To date, this successful research model has received more than $34 million in research grants and provided 86 investigators with funding for clinical and correlative trials that have produced numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals.