Solving Kids’ Cancer has come together with Neuroblastoma UK to award a grant of £609,762.40 to enable the SIOPEN High-Risk Neuroblastoma Clinical Trial 2 (HR-NBL2) to open in the UK. The trial is anticipated to open in early 2021.  

Principal Investigators: Dr Martin Elliott (Leeds Children’s Hospital), Dr Mark Gaze (University College Hospital, London), Professor Pamela Kearns (CRUK Clinical Trials Unit, University of Birmingham), Dr Juliet Gray (University of Southampton). 

Total project award: £609,762.40 

Funding Partners: Solving Kids’ Cancer and Neuroblastoma UK 

Date of award: April 2020 

This Phase 3 clinical trial will offer children in the UK, with a diagnosis of high-risk neuroblastoma,to have the same opportunities as children across Europe and take part in this pan-European study, enabling a series of important randomised questions to be answered within the overall framework of the trial. 

Solving Kids’ Cancer is the lead funder of HR-NBL2 clinical trial, a 10-year study, which will enable children in the UK to access this Europe wide trial. The study is anticipated to open in early 2021. Solving Kids’ Cancer is working with Neuroblastoma UK and have funded the trial in the respective amounts of £434,762.40 and £175,000. Solving Kids’ Cancer has received donations from the Charlie Hook Trust Fund of £174,000 and the Corey Ashcroft Trust Fund of £147,000 towards the funding of the trial.  

This commitment of funding is absolutely crucial for children with high-risk neuroblastoma in the UK enabling them to have equal access to this pan-European study. The trial builds on the successes of the previous High-Risk Neuroblastoma Trial 1 (HR-NBL1) pan-European study developed by SIOPEN and provides a clinical trial that ensures equal access to the very best treatments and care across the UK, and a pathway for future innovative therapies to be safely administered and studied. 

UK patients accounted for 20% of patients recruited to the SIOPEN HR-NBL1 and hence made a major contribution to international research. Opening of the SIOPEN HR-NBL2 trial in the UK will offer children newly diagnosed with high-risk neuroblastoma in the UK the same opportunity as children across Europe:  

  • To take part in a clinical trial with the potential to significantly improve their chance of survival 
  • To benefit from ongoing plans to incorporate clinical trials of targeted agents into upfront treatment for high-risk neuroblastoma, most notably by the addition an ALK inhibitor for patients whose tumours harbour aberations in the ALK gene. 
  • To participate in research looking at how the presence and levels of tumour markers in blood, circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA), might be used at diagnosis and for ongoing disease response assessments instead of existing more invasive imaging and biopsy techniques.  
  • To benefit from ongoing plans to study whether adding anti-GD2 monoclonal antibody therapy alongside induction chemotherapy will improve survival for children with high-risk neuroblastoma. 
  • To contribute to further improvements in clinical outcomes in neuroblastoma by participation in and be able to benefit from the introduction of future innovations over the course of the next 5-year cycle 

The trial is anticipated to open in the UK in early 2021 will open across the UK in January 2021, as part the wider SIOPEN pan-European trial. It is a ten-year longitudinal study that includes five years of clinical investigation and five years of corresponding data collection and research analysis. The trial is currently open in France, the sponsor nation, and the UK will be joining in 2021. The University of Birmingham Cancer Research UK Clinical Trials Unit, where Solving Kids’ Cancer funds a dedicated Senior Trials Coordinator for Neuroblastoma, is the UK national coordinator and will have the responsibility for delivering the trial across UK sites.