Christiana Care receives $10.56 million grant for cancer research

Medical Oncologist Gregory Masters, M.D., NCORP principal investigator at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute
Medical Oncologist Gregory Masters, M.D., NCORP principal investigator at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute

Christiana Care’s Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute has received $10.56 million six-year grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The money will support its participation in NCI’s Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP), which includes Beebe Healthcare and Nanticoke Health Services.

NCORP runs a network of cancer research centers in 32 community sites, 14 minority/underserved community sites, and seven basic research sites.

The Graham Cancer Center will use the funds to support clinical trials in prevention, screening, supportive care and symptom management, surveillance, quality of life, and care delivery. More than 27 percent of its patients enter a research clinical trial, compared with a national average of only 3-5 percent.

“We are steadfast in our commitment to make the highest-quality cancer care accessible to our patients throughout Delaware and the surrounding communities,” said Nicholas J. Petrelli, M.D., Bank of America endowed medical director of the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute. “By partnering with the NCORP research program, we can continue to change the landscape of cancer care delivery in Delaware and throughout the country in similar community-based cancer programs, where 85% of patients receive their cancer care.”

NCI has funded Christiana Care since 1987. Since then, more than 10,000 Christiana Care patients have entered into a cancer control clinical trial.

“Thanks to our partnership with NCORP, our patients can benefit greatly by gaining access to the most promising cancer-fighting strategies available,” said Medical Oncologist Gregory Masters, M.D., NCORP principal investigator at the Graham Cancer Center. “Our physician investigators carefully evaluate each of our patients for possible clinical trial participation.”

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