$200,000 to Nine Recipients: Canadian Association of Radiation Oncology announces Abbott Oncology ACURA Uro-Oncologic Radiation Awards

OTTAWA, April 19 /CNW/ - Nine leading Canadian radiation oncologists are exploring next generation enhancements to prostate cancer treatment with support from Abbott Oncology's ACURA Uro-Oncologic Radiation Awards. A selection committee of members of the Canadian Association of Radiation Oncology (CARO-ACRO) selected the 2011 recipients from among a field of 34 applicants.

Dr. Gerard Morton, committee chair, explains, "The ACURA Award program provides a unique and highly valued source of seed funding for basic science, translational, clinical and population-based prostate cancer research. A total of 93 Canadian projects have been funded in the past ten years."

Examples of the 2011 research initiatives include:

  • Dr. Nawaid Usmani of Edmonton's Cross Cancer Institute is exploring the use of genetic information to identify aggressive cancers when patients are first diagnosed, in order to help guide doctors in choosing the most effective treatments for their patients.
  • Dr. Eric Vigneault of CHUQ and Hôtel-Dieu de Québec is examining the impact of delayed wait times in the treatments of patients with intermediate and high-risk prostate cancer. The retrospective study will evaluate how patient outcomes are affected by the amount of time between prostate biopsy and treatment.
  • Dr. John Amanie of the University of Alberta is studying the targeted use of gold nanoparticles to enhance the tumor killing effect of radiation therapy on prostate cancer cells. The goal is to improve cure rates, while minimizing side effects on surrounding tissues near the prostate gland.
  • Dr. Cynthia Menard of Toronto's Princess Margaret Hospital is developing a new PET scan for patients with prostate cancer that will help to guide and tailor radiation treatments based on the oxygen properties of each patient's cancer.
  • Dr. George Rodrigues of London Health Sciences Centre is creating the Prostate Cancer Risk Stratification database, which will provide Canadian cancer researchers with an unparalleled opportunity to define risk categories and treatment outcomes for prostate cancer patients.

Other award recipients include: Dr. Julie Bowen, Regional Cancer Program, Sudbury Regional Hospital; Dr. Hans Chung, Odette Cancer Centre; Dr. Laura D'Alimonte, Odette Cancer Centre; and, Dr. Raffi Karshafian, Ryerson University & Odette Cancer Centre.

"These awards are critical to the radiation oncology profession in Canada," says Dr. Morton, "enabling our members to continue to break new ground in the successful treatment and cure of prostate cancer." Full details of the $200,000 in financial awards made to the nine 2011 recipients are available in a separate chart, posted on the CARO-ACRO web site: www.caro-acro.ca

About the Canadian Association of Radiation Oncology

Canadian Association of Radiation Oncology (CARO) - Association canadienne de radio-oncologie (ACRO) is a not-for-profit association with the mandate to represent and support its membership nationally and internationally, through the promotion of high standards of patient care in the practice of radiation oncology, support of excellence in professional standards, and promotion of radiation oncology research and education.

CARO is a partner with other disciplines in seeking to improve outcomes for cancer patients, and provides a consultative authority to oncology related agencies, academic institutions, and to the public in all matters pertaining to radiotherapy and oncology in Canada. For further information: www.caro-acro.ca

About Abbott
Abbott is a global, broad-based health care company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals and medical products, including nutritionals, devices and diagnostics. The company employs nearly 90,000 people and markets its products in more than 130 countries. Abbott has been operating in Canada since 1931 and its Canadian operations are headquartered in Montreal, Quebec. Abbott Canada employs more than 2,000 people. Abbott's news releases and other information are available on the company's web sites at www.abbott.ca and www.abbott.com.

SOURCE Canadian Association of Radiation Oncology

For further information:

J. McLarty, jamcla@telus.net or 604.740.5839

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