Australian & New Zealand Childrens Haematology/Oncology Group


INTER-EWING-1: A new international trial for Ewing Sarcoma patients

January 2022

ANZCHOG is delighted to announce that a new international clinical trial for patients diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma will soon be available in Australia and New Zealand.

Ewing Sarcoma (ES) is a rare type of cancer, arising in the bone or surrounding tissues. It can be diagnosed at any age, but occurs most frequently in children, adolescents and young adults. It is an aggressive disease, and the prognosis is poor for patients once the disease has spread.

INTER-EWING-1 is an international clinical trial that examines several new treatment strategies for ES patients, including access to a novel agent (a tyrosine kinase inhibitor), optimising radiotherapy doses and adding “maintenance” chemotherapy at the end of other planned treatments. Importantly, patients of all ages will be eligible to enrol on this clinical trial.

Led by an internationally renowned team of sarcoma researchers from across Europe and the United Kingdom, Australian researchers have contributed to development of the trial, which is now in its final phases of development.

INTER-EWING-1 will be funded by the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund (via Canteen), The Kids’ Cancer Project and the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation, the Australian Government’s Medical Research Future Fund (through the 2021 Rare Cancers, Rare Diseases and Unmet Need MRF2015073) and our clinical collaborators Australia and New Zealand Sarcoma Association (ANZSA) supported by their philanthropic partner the GPA Andrew Ursini Charitable Fund.

“For rare cancers like Ewing Sarcoma, it is vital that we work with our international colleagues to conduct clinical trials that seek to improve treatments for patients,” said Chief Investigator Associate Professor Geoff McCowage. “It is only through the combined support of all of these funders that we will be able to offer this innovative trial to patients of all ages across Australia and New Zealand.”

The University of Birmingham will act as the International Sponsor for the INTER-EWING-1 trial, with ANZCHOG the National Sponsor for participating Australian and New Zealand paediatric and adult oncology centres.

“The ongoing collaboration between ANZCHOG and ANZSA means that we are able to open this trial in paediatric and adult centres in a coordinated way,”“ said National Principal Investigator Associate Professor Dr Marianne Phillips. “This is really important for future access to trials developed by international consortia in this space, as we can demonstrate that Australia and New Zealand has an effective model to enrol patients of all ages within a high quality, streamlined trial framework.”

ANZCHOG’s philanthropic partners provide vital co-funding to enable this important trial to open. Funding from The Kids’ Cancer Project and the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation will ensure that all paediatric cancer centres throughout Australia and New Zealand can open the trial. “There is an urgent need for new therapies for Ewing Sarcoma which is most commonly found in young patients and continues to have a poor prognosis,” said The Kids’ Cancer Project CEO Owen Finegan. “The Kids’ Cancer Project and the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation are proud to be providing funding for this exciting international clinical trial, which will help children across Australia and beyond benefit from access to new treatment strategies.”

Funding support from Canteen ensures the INTER-EWING-1 trial will also open at a number of adult cancer centres. “Canteen is proud to award funding to this clinical trial as part of our focus on improving outcomes for all adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer patients,” said Canteen CEO Peter Orchard. “Opening access and participation in clinical trials for this highly lethal cancer type will allow us to improve the extremely poor survival outcome of Ewing Sarcoma, which is currently responsible for 24% of cancer deaths in AYAs.”

ANZCHOG is a non-profit organisation committed to ensuring Australian and New Zealand children receive world-class cancer care. We are the peak professional body for paediatric oncologists and health professionals who care for children with cancer, spearheading national initiatives to enhance clinical care through communication, networking and education. We are also the national cooperative clinical trials group for childhood cancer, actively working with trial consortia around the globe to ensure Australian and New Zealand children have the opportunity to access the latest promising cancer treatments.