Press release: EORTC STRASS 2 Trial receives the ‘Roger Wilson Research Award’ by Sarcoma UK
EORTC 1809 STRASS 2 is an international clinical trial exploring treatment options (chemotherapy followed by surgery versus surgery alone) for patients with high-risk retroperitoneal sarcoma, an aggressive and rare cancer affecting the soft tissues of the body. Some types of retroperitoneal sarcoma are particularly aggressive, with a high risk of death in the years after treatment, so better options are needed to improve disease control and survival for these patients.
The EORTC STRASS 2 trial is an international phase 3 clinical trial in 10 European countries, the UK and a collaboration with multiple specialised sarcoma centres in Australia, Canada and North America. Sarcoma UK is contributing to the UK arm of STRASS 2, providing vital collaborative funding to support this important international trial.
About the STRASS 2 study
Retroperitoneal sarcomas affect the abdomen and make up 15% of all soft-tissue sarcomas. They are aggressive and challenging to diagnose, which makes them difficult to treat. Some subtypes, such as high-grade dedifferentiated liposarcoma and leiomyosarcoma, are particularly high-risk, with a 70% risk of death 5 years after treatment. There is a clear need for new and better treatments for retroperitoneal sarcoma, which is generally treated with just surgery alone.
The first trial of its kind, the STRASS 2 trial aims to investigate the impact of delivering chemotherapy to these high-risk sarcoma patients before surgery. This is a randomised trial, meaning that patients recruited will be randomly split into two groups. Half of the patients recruited will receive just surgery to treat their cancer, while the other half will receive three cycles of chemotherapy, and then surgery 3-6 weeks later.
The main aim of the trial is to see if giving patients chemotherapy before their surgery will improve the chances of survival. Other aims include preventing the sarcoma spreading to other parts of the body, preventing the sarcoma coming back after the patient has recovered, and improving the patients’ quality of life.
What this means for people affected by sarcoma: These high-risk cancers urgently need new and better treatments. Understanding the difference in effectiveness between different types of treatment will mean that clinicians can work to identify the best treatment options for retroperitoneal sarcoma patients.
The EORTC STRASS 2 trial will open in 8 hospitals /cancer centres across the UK.
UK National Coordinator: Dr Dirk Strauss, The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust
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Notes to the Editor
About the EORTC
European Organisation for the Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) is a not for profit organisation, which unites clinical cancer research experts, throughout Europe, to define better treatments for cancer patients to prolong survival and improve quality of life. Spanning from translational to large, prospective, multi-centre, phase III clinical trials that evaluate new therapies and treatment strategies as well as patient quality of life, its activities are coordinated from EORTC Headquarters, a unique international clinical research infrastructure, based in Brussels, Belgium.
For further information, please visit the EORTC website: www.eortc.org
About Sarcoma UK
Sarcoma UK is a national charity that funds vital research, offers support for anyone affected by sarcoma cancer and campaigns for better treatments. It is the only cancer charity in the UK focusing on all types of sarcoma.
Information on the Roger Wilson Research Award
In recognition of Founder, Roger Wilson CBE, Sarcoma UK awards an annual Roger Wilson Research Award in an area of clinical research. This honours Roger’s vision that Sarcoma UK should aim to find answers through funding sarcoma research. More information about the Award and Roger Wilson himself can be found on Sarcoma UK’s website.