Fund for cancer research


THE IRISH Cancer Society (ICS) is to make €7.5 million available for collaborative research over the next five years to find new treatments for the disease.

The money will go towards the setting up of a collaborative cancer research centre in Ireland. It will not be a bricks and mortar institute but will operate in existing centres of cancer research in the Republic.

The money equates to €1.5 million in funding being allocated per year for up to five years.

The society’s head of research, Prof Jim Fitzpatrick, said the aim was to maximise the potential from much of the existing cancer research in Ireland.

“We are trying to build up the capacity for one of these centres to be in a strong position to apply for a large grant around the world.

“At present we have groups in different universities co-operating. What we are looking for is not co-operating, it is collaborating. This means that these groups will be all getting together across various institutions and disciplines to have a cohesive plan for collaborative cancer research.

“We need to have it aiming for a common goal so that people are not competing against each other for funding.”

Currently Irish cancer researchers are strong in areas of diagnostic tools for detecting cancer and in producing biomarkers to identify the specific types of cancer that an individual patient might have.

The ICS has given institutions until October 26th to apply for grant funding.

The ultimate goal will to be to develop early-stage clinical trials and, if successful, engage with the healthcare industry to bring the research to a stage where it can be used by cancer patients.