The Kinghorn Cancer Centre eNews Issue 4 – September 2010

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Building progress

Excavation on The Kinghorn Cancer Centre is almost complete as planned. Detailed excavation works are now taking place including the formation of a large rectangular area for the diesel tank which will be part of the emergency power system. There is now a crane, over 67 metres in height installed at the site.

A community mural

Generous supporters of The Kinghorn Cancer Centre and staff from our partner organisations,
the Garvan and St Vincent’s Hospital, are not afraid to get their hands dirty to share in community spirit. Together with students from local Darlinghurst Primary School, they have created a unique community mural, “HELPING HANDS, HEALING HANDS”, which features hundreds of hand prints of St Vincent’s and Garvan staff, students, Kinghorn Cancer Centre Patron Delta Goodrem, Jill Kinghorn and other generous supporters. This mural embodies not only community connectivity but also the importance of making major inroads in the fight against cancer for future generations.

“I am so proud that my hand print is going to be on the Kinghorn Cancer Centre. For me it represents a symbolic connectivity to a project that I am very close to as we work towards finding better cancer treatments for our community and beyond,” said Patron Delta Goodrem.

The mural has been erected along Victoria Street on the hoarding of the construction site of The Kinghorn Cancer Centre for the two-­‐year duration of the Centre’s construction.

ACRF announces $5 million grant

The Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) has awarded its equal largest ever research grant of $5 million towards the construction of The Kinghorn Cancer Centre. The ACRF grant honours the late Lady (Sonia) McMahon, life member and one of two joint founders of the Foundation (the other being the late Sir Peter Abeles). Lady McMahon passed away earlier this year at St Vincent’s Hospital after a long battle with cancer. The announcement was made at a cocktail party attended by Lady McMahon’s daughter Melinda and her daughter Alicia.

A plaque in Lady McMahon’s memory was unveiled at the event.

Cancer Care news from St Vincent’s

We continue to develop the concept of a Wellness Centre, which has been allocated space on the ground floor of The Kinghorn Cancer Centre. This is in response to consumer demand -­‐ where the need for information about and access to complementary therapies, including acupuncture, massage, dietary advice and exercise has been identified. Our capacity to deliver care has been enhanced with the appointment of Dr Amanda Goldrick as a new Medical Oncologist, together with the appointment of an additional Oncology Registrar in 2011. Also of great importance is the recruitment, currently in progress, of an Oncology Pharmacist -­‐ a new and much needed position for our Cancer Service.

Cancer Research News from Garvan

During the past 3 months our research teams have had considerable success in developing new approaches to personalised medicine for cancer patients. The Prostate Cancer team published an important study reporting a new gene test that better differentiates “good” from “bad” prostate cancers. This will further aid in deciding the best therapy for individual patients. A further publication from our Breast Cancer and Signal Transduction teams identified potential new strategies for treating the aggressive, “basal-­‐like” subtype of breast cancer. Our work was further boosted by the announcement of a new 5 year grant of $3.7M from the Cancer Institute NSW to the Cancer Program. The funding is expected to lead to improved clinical decision-­‐making for breast, prostate and pancreatic cancer within the next 5 years. Garvan researchers will use the latest technologies to identify potential ‘biomarkers’, specific changes in cells at the molecular level that indicate the presence and type of disease. Biomarkers will be used to stratify patients with different subtypes of the three target cancers. Biomarkers will also be developed to predict response to therapy. The grant will greatly expand the capacity and quality of the research focus on personalised medicine. We expect to deliver new biomarkers to the clinic during the funding period 2010 to 2014.