Research Development

The VCCC Alliance develops and supports systems and processes that enable research knowledge to be applied in clinical practice to help ensure that patients benefit quickly from the latest cancer research.

Building new research capability and infrastructure

The VCCC Alliance is working to build research capability and expand more areas of research to inform new and better prevention, early detection, treatments and care.

To build new capability in key areas such as health services research and other data-driven clinical research, the VCCC Alliance is creating structures for sharing and linking health data, as well as developing advanced analytical capability for data-driven research and connections that bring together data sciences and clinical expertise. 

Expanding research capability also requires investment in fields with relatively low cancer research activity such as primary care, nursing, palliative care, evaluation sciences, implementation science, health services and health data sciences. In addition, our investment in leadership in research and education for specific tumour streams is expanding research capability through professional development activities; connecting and supporting multi-site, interdisciplinary research.

Accelerating translation into clinical practice

The members of the VCCC Alliance bring particular research strengths in areas such as cancer biology, immunology, early phase clinical trials, imaging and genomics. We are working together to find ways to improve integration and enhance their application in clinical settings.

Precision Oncology

Next-generation genomic technologies integrated with clinical decision-making are starting to provide tailored treatments that provide the right drug for an individual patient at the right time. The VCCC Alliance is working to enable availability of tumour genomic profiling in a more clinically-useful timeframe and upskilling more cancer clinicians in the use and interpretation of genomic data.

Immunotherapy Research

VCCC Alliance members are internationally competitive in fundamental immunology and tumour immunology research. Through our Immunotherapy Program, the VCCC Alliance is working to integrate existing techniques and platform technologies with preclinical and clinical research plus immunotherapy clinical trials, to support greater patient access to treatments.

Level 13 of the VCCC building is home to the Centre for Cancer Immunotherapy, a collaborative space that involves all 10 partners in the VCCC Alliance, led by the University of Melbourne and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

The centre brings together cancer immunology researchers and clinicians from across the partners of the VCCC Alliance, who will work together to discover and improve immunotherapy treatments and speed up their translation into clinical care for patients. 

The centre will boost immunotherapy-based programs across the state including expansion of clinical trials and education for cancer clinicians and researchers.

Targeted Therapies

Matching the right targeted therapy to an individual patient is recognised as a major challenge. Our work in targeted therapies seeks to connect existing expertise in analytical technologies, such as molecular imaging, ’omic’ technologies and single cell analysis technologies. These activities seek to understand the biological basis of why some patients participating in clinical trials of targeted therapies respond but some do not.

Precision Prevention

Cancer prevention and screening programs that are targeted at high-risk individuals will have improved benefits and reduced harms, as well as increased cost-effectiveness. The VCCC Alliance is working towards the translation of evidence-based risk prediction models, combined with new research and evidence on best practice for risk-stratified screening, to develop clinical practice or public health policies.

Participate and contribute

Our research development programs seek to build research capacity and capability to accelerate translation and enable research-led care for cancer patients.

For further information regarding the research development programs, contact Dr Mark Buzza, VCCC Alliance Head of Research.