ICARE’s NEW Approach to Cancer Patient Care and to Therapy Development Through the I-TEAM Process
ICARE was initiated in 1985 in Bethesda, MD by several prominent cancer scientists from around the world. ICARE was originally organized as a vehicle for cancer “think tanks” that focused on identifying obstacles to creativity and innovation in cancer research laboratories. Over the years, ICARE created numerous information and research programs designed to increase patient survival by increasing the flow of therapy information to doctors and patients alike. In general, ICARE’s symposia, its clinical trial matching programs, and its publications (Cancer Therapy Reviews, Pharmaceutical Updates, Etc.) targeted broad audiences of cancer patient and their families.
In recent years however, ICARE’s programs began to shift in focus from just providing therapy information to patients to identifying, initiating, and funding cutting-edge research projects targeting the tumors of individual patients. These innovative projects emphasized research strategies that could directly lead to discovery and faster development of therapies that had much higher efficacy and less toxicity. This shift was accelerated in 2010 when some of the ICARE global scientists accepted the challenge of partnering with individual cancer patients and their doctors to form a type of “Manhattan Project” that would try and find viable solutions in “real time” for immediate clinical issues facing the doctor and patient.
In particular from 2010 to 2012, ICARE was recruited and funded to establish personalized medical research projects on behalf 3 individuals with advanced cancers — the first with a rare form of liver cancer and the second and third with two different types of metastatic melanoma. During that period, a ten-step innovative research process (the I-Team Process) evolved that led to the discovery and evaluation of more than thirty new drugs or approaches to be considered by the doctors of these three individuals.
It should be noted that, in less than two years, with limited, but unrestricted funding, ICARE recruited a team of more than 40 world class scientists to focus their expertise and lab work on the urgent therapy needs of individual cancer patients. As a result, over 30 new therapeutic approaches have been discovered and many of these are currently in the clinical pipeline. Many of the new options are applicable to other types of cancer. In addition, new targets and ideas for new therapies continue to emanate from I-Team collaborative projects.
ICARE invites you to join (click here) and support the I-TEAM PROCESS and our campaign to test our hypothesis that “Creativity, and perhaps only creativity, will lead to treatment solutions for someone you love”.