Newswise — The Helping to Enhance Research in Oncology program will hold its tenth annual celebration event. The event honors those on cancer clinical trials and raises awareness for the importance of cancer clinical trials. The event will offer public information sessions about clinical trials.


Clinical trials are research studies conducted in people. They help doctors and scientists learn more about how to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

Doctors watch people on clinical trials very carefully while gathering scientific data on the effects of new drugs and treatments. The data guide further development and may also help to gain approval from the Food and Drug Administration. Once a cancer drug or treatment receives FDA approval, it can become part of the standard care for that type of cancer.

The path to FDA approval can easily take more than a decade and cost more than $ 2.5 billion, according to the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development. This time and expense includes discovering the drug or treatment, developing it for use in animals and people, testing it in animals and then testing it in people. The tests in people are completed in four stages of clinical trials. Often, more studies to monitor the drug’s effect are conducted after FDA approval. People taking part in clinical trials may get the new drug or treatment years before the FDA approves it.

People volunteer to take part in cancer clinical trials for many reasons. Some hope a clinical trial will help their own cancer journey. Many others wish to help future cancer patients. People in a cancer clinical trial may or may not get the new drug or treatment and the new drug or treatment may not work better than the current standard care. All the data collected from clinical trials helps to improve cancer treatment.

To honor the people who volunteer to take part in clinical trials, and therefore help to improve future cancer care, the New Mexico Cancer Care Alliance holds an annual event.


Saturday, August 19th, 2017
From 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.


Hotel Albuquerque
800 Rio Grande Blvd NW
Albuquerque, New Mexico


Teresa L. Stewart, MS, CRCP

New Mexico Cancer Care Alliance
Executive Director

The University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center
Director, Clinical Research Office and
New Mexico NCORP Minority/Underserved, Administrator


Dorothy Hornbeck, JKPR, 505-340-5929, [email protected]

About the UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center

The University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center is the Official Cancer Center of New Mexico and the only National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center in a 500-mile radius. Its 125 board-certified oncology specialty physicians include cancer surgeons in every specialty (abdominal, thoracic, bone and soft tissue, neurosurgery, genitourinary, gynecology, and head and neck cancers), adult and pediatric hematologists/medical oncologists, gynecologic oncologists, and radiation oncologists. They, along with more than 500 other cancer healthcare professionals (nurses, pharmacists, nutritionists, navigators, psychologists and social workers), provided cancer care for nearly 60 percent of the adults and children in New Mexico affected by cancer. They treated 11,249 patients in 84,875 ambulatory clinic visits in addition to in-patient hospitalizations at UNM Hospital. These patients came from every county in the State. More than 12 percent of these patients participated in cancer clinical trials testing new cancer treatments and 35 percent of patients participated in other clinical research studies, including tests of novel cancer prevention strategies and cancer genome sequencing. The 130 cancer research scientists affiliated with the UNMCCC were awarded almost $60 million in federal and private grants and contracts for cancer research projects and published 301 high quality publications. Promoting economic development, they filed more than 30 new patents in FY16, and since 2010, have launched 11 new biotechnology start-up companies. Scientists associated with the UNMCCC Cancer Control & Disparities have conducted more than 60 statewide community-based cancer education, prevention, screening, and behavioral intervention studies involving more than 10,000 New Mexicans. Finally, the physicians, scientists and staff have provided education and training experiences to more than 230 high school, undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral fellowship students in cancer research and cancer health care delivery. Learn more at www.cancer.unm.edu.