Integrating Cancer Imaging Biomarker Clinical Research Across UK

Researchers and medical experts from nine world-leading medical imaging centres across the UK come together to form an integrated infrastructure for standardising and validating cancer imaging biomarkers for clinical use.

The centres include University of Manchester, University College London, University of Oxford, King’s College London, The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, Imperial College London, Cambridge University, Newcastle University and University of Glasgow. This unique UK infrastructure provides clinical researchers across the UK with open access to world-class clinical imaging facilities and expertise, as well a repository data management service, artificial intelligence (AI) tools and ongoing training opportunities.

The NCITA consortium, through engagement with NHS Trusts, pharmaceutical companies, medical imaging and nuclear medicine companies as well as funding bodies and patient groups, aims to develop a robust and sustainable imaging biomarker certification process, to revolutionise the speed and accuracy of cancer diagnosis, tumour classification and patient response to treatment.

Professor James O’Connor, Professor of Radiology at the University of Manchester and Honorary Consultant Radiologist at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust said ‘We are delighted to be part of NCITA and are looking forward to coordinating an imaging study in non-small cell lung cancer patients using oxygen enhanced MRI for the network.’

The NCITA initiative is funded by Cancer Research UK and will receive up to £10 million over 5 years.

The NCITA network is led by Prof Shonit Punwani, Prof James O’Connor, Prof Eric Aboagye, Prof Geoff Higgins, Prof Evis Sala, Prof Dow Mu Koh, Prof Tony Ng, Prof Hing Leung and Prof Ruth Plummer with up to 49 co-investigators supporting the NCITA initiative. NCITA is keen to expand and bring in new academic and industrial partnerships as it develops.

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