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Breast Cancer Research Trust NZ, gaining knowledge and saving lives

Participating in a clinical trial

Why participate in a trial?

Participation in a clinical trial does assist with the advancement of medical knowledge.

People take part in trials for a number of reasons. They may receive a new treatment before it is widely available to other cancer patients. Evidence shows people can also have better outcomes because they have been involved in a trial, even if they have received standard treatment. This may be because most participants on a clinical trial receive carefully and most often rigorously monitored treatment and follow-up.

It is extremely important that all new therapies and procedures be scientifically proven and long term safety determined before they can be recommended for general or standard use.

Is a trial suitable for you?

Your Surgeon or Oncologist (Cancer Doctor or Specialist) may suggest that you consider taking part in a clinical trial that they may be contributing to or know of one being done at another centre.

If you are interested in taking part in a study ask your Surgeon or Oncology Doctor.

Your Surgeon or Oncology Doctor will explain a trial to you including the known benefits and risks of a new treatment or procedure. A patient information sheet giving the details of the research will also be given to you before you agree (consent) to take part in a trial.

Open clinical trials

The Breast Cancer Research Trust has currently four clinical trials open to new patients:

The EXPERT Trial

Find out about Breast Cancer Research Trust EXPERT trial

The EXPERT clinical trial is a randomised phase 3 trial open to women aged 50 years or older, with Hormone Receptor (HR) positive, Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2 (HER2) negative, early stage breast cancer. EXPERT uses a genomic test of breast cancer tissue to select women who can safely avoid radiation therapy. The trial aims to improve personalised use of radiation therapy in early breast cancer patients, according to individual risk of local recurrence. 

For more information contact: Jenni Scarlet, Research Nurse
Email: Jenni.Scarlet@waikatodhb.health.nz
Phone: 07 839 8726 ext 97916

The Lymph Node Grafting Clinical Trial

Find out about Breast Cancer Research Trust Lymph Node Grafting Trial

The trial is looking into lymph node grafting for upper limb lymphoedema following breast cancer treatment. With an aim of determining whether lymph node grafting plus standard lymphoedema therapy produces a greater reduction in lymphoedema volume and improved quality of life for those with upper limb lymphedema.

For more information contact: Heather Flay, Research Nurse
Email: Heather.Flay@waikatodhb.health.nz
Phone: 07 839 8726 ext 97960


ABCpro Study

Learn about ABCpro Study for women with advanced breast cancer

A study evaluating a new online service for managing self-reported symptoms by women with advanced breast cancer

This is study evaluating a new service where patients complete weekly online surveys about common symptoms of advanced breast cancer (ABC) and side effects associated with ABC treatments. The survey responses are then sent to an ABC nurse who will use the responses to assist patients to better manage symptoms and side effects from home in between regular clinic visits. The survey responses will also help the patient's oncology team to decide if further tests or treatments are needed.

For more information contact: Jenni Scarlet, Research Nurse
Email: Jenni.Scarlet@waikatodhb.health.nz
Phone: 07 839 8726 ext 97916

PersevERA Trial

Find out more about PersevERA breast cancer trial

4)A study to compare GDC-9545 plus palbociclib versus letrozole plus palbociclib in people with estrogen receptor-positive, HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer

GDC-9545 (also known as giredestrant) is an investigational new drug designed to block the female sex hormone called estrogen that contributes to the growth and progression of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer.  Investigational means that the drug has not been approved by health authorities for cancer treatment or treatment of any other disease.  Palbociclib (IBRANCE and letrozole the two other drugs being used in this study, are currently approved therapies in New Zealand for estrogen receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer).

The purpose of this study is to compare the effects, good or bad, of GDC-9545 given in combination with palbociclib versus letrozole given in combination with palbociclib, on patients with ER-positive, HER2-negative locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer.   We need to find out which combination works best for ER positive breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, find out more about side effects, and how treatments affect quality of life.

For more information contact: Jenni Scarlet, Research Nurse
Email: Jenni.Scarlet@waikatodhb.health.nz
Phone: 07 839 8726 ext 97916

Where are the participating centres for breast cancer trials in New Zealand?

In New Zealand, breast cancer clinical trials are available at Cancer Centres or Breast Clinics at public hospitals in:

  • North Shore
  • Auckland
  • Waikato
  • Palmerston North
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Dunedin

Some Cancer Specialists in private clinics participate in breast cancer clinical trials. Do ask your treating Oncology Doctor if there is a trial available for your situation.