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Research and clinical trials

The Grand River Regional Cancer Centre (GRRCC) recognizes the importance of research in advancing the fight against cancer. Our clinical trials department collaborates with academia, as well as government and private agencies, to conduct clinical trials that contribute to improving cancer care.

What is a clinical trial?
Clinical trials are research studies that involve human subjects to investigate new ways to prevent, diagnose or treat cancer.

All new treatments must be evaluated through clinical trials before they can be offered to patients as standard treatment. Research into new treatments often takes many years in order to ensure that they are safe and effective.

Clinical trials offered to patients are reviewed and approved by a research ethics board (REB) before the study starts and then assessed annually to ensure the ongoing safety of patients in the study. The Tri-Hospital Research Ethics Board (THREB) and/or Ontario Cancer Research Ethics Board (OCREB) provide ethics review of studies conducted at the GRRCC. The data that is collected during a clinical trial must be submitted to, and approved by, Health Canada before a new treatment can be marketed.

Who participates in a clinical trial?
Patient participation is voluntary and each clinical trial has very specific rules about who may participate. Clinical trials may provide patients with more treatment options or access to treatments that are otherwise not available. The clinical trials department works with the doctors at the cancer centre to identify patients who may be eligible for a clinical trial. Patients are also encouraged to ask their oncologist whether there is a study that may be right for them.

If you are invited to participate in a study, your oncologist and a research nurse will fully explain the study to you and give you time to ask questions, seek additional information and decide whether you wish to participate.

Current clinical trials at the GRRCC
All clinical trials at the GRRCC are listed with The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.

For more information on research visit:
The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research
Cancer Care Ontario
Information for investigators
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