NEW YORK – The Jackson Laboratory's Maine Cancer Genomics Initiative said on Wednesday that it will be the coordinating center for clinical trials sites in Maine and New Hampshire participating in the American Society of Clinical Oncology's Targeted Agent and Profiling Utilization Registry (TAPUR) study.
ASCO launched the TAPUR basket trial in 2015 to explore the off-label activity of marketed drugs in advanced cancer patients who harbor specific genomic alterations but are out of treatment options. The study has already enrolled more than 2,000 cancer patients to date. The Jackson Laboratory's involvement as a coordinating center will increase opportunities for patients in these largely rural northeastern states to enroll in the multi-cohort trial and access molecularly informed cancer treatments.
The Jackson Laboratory launched the Maine Cancer Genomics Initiative in 2016, aiming to make genomic profiling more accessible to cancer patients in the state. The program has tested 1,600 patients to date and helped community oncologists in Maine apply the test results to deliver precision medicine.
The aim within the initiative, which is now moving into its second phase with the help of an $11.8 million grant, is to provide genomic testing to an additional 3,200 cancer patients and match them to clinical trials like TAPUR based on their tumor genomic profile. That laboratory is hoping to enroll dozens of cancer patients in the TAPUR study each year who may not have had the opportunity to enroll in a local clinical trial.
"By bringing the TAPUR Study to Maine and New Hampshire, especially to the most rural and geographically isolated areas and those with significant aging populations who are especially vulnerable to cancer, we will enable access to the most promising treatments for specific mutations," Jens Rueter, medical director of The Jackson Laboratory, said in a statement. "We expect that this will form the basis for successfully attracting additional clinical trials to the Northeast and other rural areas where this level of innovative medicine is truly needed."