Boosting research in Europe and channelling the funds raised to the most impactful programmes: this is the ambition of the Fight Kids Cancer project call, which we launched on 15 January 2020 with the Belgian KickCancer Foundation and the Luxembourg Kriibskrank Kanner Foundation.
Based on similar observation in the field of paediatric cancer research – on the one hand researchers are seeking funding for their projects and on the other, associations and foundations are struggling to identify impactful programmes to support financially – we have partnered with the Belgian KickCancer Foundation and the Luxembourg Kriibskrank Kanner Foundation to launch a major European call for projects: “Fight Kids Cancer”.
From mid-January until the beginning of April, European researchers will be able to submit their research projects on a dedicated online platform. All the projects will then be analysed and noted by the European Science Foundation (ESF), an independent European organization specialising in calls for projects, with the help of a scientific committee of international experts. At the end of May, two to five projects will be selected and will benefit from the three million Euros raised by the associations and foundations of the Fight Kids Cancer initiative in 2020.
This approach aims to address the structural lack of research dedicated to paediatric cancers by ensuring a recurrent endowment fund that will be allocated annually to the best European research projects.
For its first edition in 2020, the Fight Kids Cancer call for projects recommends two lines of research: early-stage clinical trials and translational research.
PROGRAMME EVALUATION PROCESS: INDEPENDENCE AND EXCELLENCE
This initiative is being developed in partnership with the European Science Foundation (ESF), which brings together a network of 300.000 researchers and already manages more than 2.000 programmes in 30 countries. This collaboration with top professionals is the guarantee of excellence in the overall management of the call for projects.
Each project will be reviewed by the three founding organizations as well as by a committee of eminent and internationally prominent persons in pediatric cancer research.
The strategic committee, which identifies the research topics, is composed of two prominent personalities: Prof Pamela Kearns and Prof Gilles Vassal. The Committee for the evaluation of submitted projects consists of independent international experts: Peter Adamson, Ségolène Aymé, Andrew Pearson and Anne Rios.
See biographies below.
Very positive initial feedback
This call for projects has been enthusiastically welcomed by researchers and the scientific community in Europe and the United States.
Professor Andrew Pearson: “What is being built here is revolutionary and will significantly accelerate research and collaboration among researchers.”
Dr. Anne Rios: “This kind of novelty is essential to speed up healing processes.”
BIOGRAPHY OF THE MEMBERS OF THE STRATEGIC COMMITTEE AND STUDY OF PROJECTS
- Pamela Kearns, Professor of Pediatric Oncology at the University of Birmingham and consultant at Birmingham Pediatric Hospital. She heads the Cancer Research United Kingdom’s clinical trials unit at the University of Birmingham, the largest of its kind in the United Kindom.
- Gilles Vassal, paediatrician, oncologist and pharmacologist, professor of medical oncology at the University of Paris Saclay. He is Director of Clinical Research at Gustave Roussy at Villejuif, France. He is the founder and chairman of the European ITCC network – Innovative Therapies for Children with Cancer – for the development of new children medication.
- Peter Adamson, Professor of Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Founder and President of the Children’s Oncology Group (COG.)
- Ségolène Aymé, geneticist and epidemiologist, director of research emeritus at INSERM. Founder of Orphanet, the platform for rare diseases and orphan drugs, chairs the “Topic Advisory Group” of the World Health Organization and coordinates the scientific secretariat of the IRDiRC (International Rare Diseases Research Consortium.)
- Andrew Pearson, 30 years of experience in pediatric clinical oncology and 25 years in translational research on neuroblastoma in clinical trials and early clinical development of juvenile treatments. A pioneer in the United Kingdom, he was the founding president of the International Society of Pediatric Oncology in Europe (SIOPEN).
- Anne Rios, group leader at the Princess MaximaCentre (Utrecht) and head of the imaging centre. She is currently studying the cellular mechanisms underlying the progression of pediatric solid tumors using state-of-the-art imaging technologies.