2022 update on Plan National Cancer 2020-2024

19 September 2022 3minutes

On July 8th 2022, a meeting was held by the Health Directorate to provide an update on the progress made in the various axes of the National Cancer Plan 2020-2024. Prof Niclou of the Luxembourg Institute of Health presented on the numerous achievements of the Axis 8 “Clinical and Translational Research”, in particular on the establishment of a National Centre for Translational Cancer Research (NCTCR) in Luxembourg, giving at once an overview of the past year and a glance at the future.

With patient support as a cross-cutting theme, the National Cancer Plan 2020-2024 (PNC2) aims to consolidate the actions taken in the fight against cancer during its initial phase in the first PNC. PNC2 will prioritize the digitization of data exchanges and the expansion of the country’s information systems, the implementation of modern genetics and molecular pathology through the development of the National Center for Human Genetics (CNGH), the structuring of the field of oncology into skills networks, the development of research in translational oncology, and the recognition of the central role and missions of the National Cancer Institute (INC).

On Friday July 8, a presentation on the state of the various axes of PNC2 took place at the Health Directorate. In the framework of the meeting, Prof Simone Niclou, Director of the Department of Cancer Research at the Luxembourg Institute of Health and Supervisor of the PNC2 Axis 8, presented the progress made on the Axis 8, “Clinical and Translational Research”, whose aim is to foster patient-oriented cancer research in Luxembourg and provide access to clinical studies and innovative treatments to patients.

As explained by Prof Niclou: “Research of today is the medicine of tomorrow”. The National Centre for Translational Cancer Research (NCTCR), with its primary objectives to develop translational research, increase access to innovative treatment through clinical trials and establishing preventative research, has been developed through the Axis 8. Over the past year, the project has worked to set the ground to foster translational cancer research and innovative technology benefitting the patient, and has boasted plentiful achievements.

Following the receipt of funding for an INITIATE proposal from the FNR and PNC, the NCTCR was launched, with a kick-off meeting on the 28th of April 2022 involving all the potential partners in Luxembourg. It was agreed that the purpose of the NCTCR will be to improve cancer prevention, quality of care, development of innovative technologies and optimization of molecular diagnostics, the personalization of treatments and digital patient monitoring. A special focus would be given to research on cellular immunotherapy in Luxembourg. The NCTCR strives to eventually support the development of clinical trials, and, in parallel, set up a National Cancer Collection (NCC) to store tumour and blood samples for research purposes at LIH’s Integrated Biobank of Luxembourg. Samples, data flow and informed consent forms will be managed in close cooperation with the hospitals and coordinated by the National Cancer Institute (INC).

Looking to the future, the NCTCR will continue to work towards the centralization of data, and the digitalization of clinical data. In addition, plans are in place to develop a research strategy for the National Cancer Registry (RNC). The NCTCR will continue to generate data for research and clinical research, for which it is currently recruiting specialized clinicians involved in research and data management.

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