The PREDICT project has been developed at the BC Cancer Agency's Vancouver Island Centre by multidisciplinary teams.
The project aims to engage all staff and all new cancer patients in the process of research to improve care. Less than 10% of staff and patients were once involved in research at the centre. Because of PREDICT, now 60% of all new patients are approached, of whom over 95% choose to become involved in research and provide a blood sample and permission to be contacted to discuss future research projects.
PREDICT stands for Personal REsponse Determinants In Cancer Therapy. It is a unique centre-wide research project that has embedded a research culture into the day to day clinical care activities of the BC Cancer Agency’s Vancouver Island Centre (VIC).
The goals of PREDICT are to:
- create a population-scale biobank of blood samples obtained prior to initiation of systemic therapy from 20,000 new cancer patients;
- obtain permission from all new patients to be contacted to participate in future research projects, overcoming ethical and logistical hurdles to translational health research; and
- engage 75% of new patients and staff at the VIC in a common research endeavour that changes the culture of a cancer centre.
PREDICT provides a unique platform to support specific research into host factors, such as the patient’s immune system and adverse reactions to therapy, that influence the outcome of cancer therapies. It is unique in Canadian cancer centres, and other BC Cancer Agency centres are currently planning to emulate it.
The Tumour Tissue Repository provides oversight for PREDICT lab processes and biospecimen management.
PREDICT is an integral part of what the BC Cancer Agency’s Vancouver Island Centre (VIC) offers to new cancer patients, and has many achievements.
Increased opportunity for patients to participate in research;
- Facilitated research with >5,500 patients enrolled and >10 qualified researchers and research projects supported
- Trained personnel: 8 research interns
- Established a governance model that includes a formal open access process overseen by a Management Committee that reports to the Vancouver Island Research and Development Committee (VIRAD).
- Created a new model for care and research: other centres and hospitals are now setting up similar projects based on PREDICT.
- Sustaining the project costs and the project effort: The number of new patients seen annually at VIC has increased significantly since PREDICT began and this creates challenges for our clinical staff to continue to provide and to improve our clinical care as well as to sustain research projects like PREDICT that offer new research opportunities to our patients. The PREDICT management team continues to monitor the project closely and to develop modifications to the PREDICT process that improve operations and efficiency that allow us to offer PREDICT to the most patients.
Process for Patients
- New patients are offered the opportunity to participate in PREDICT by their oncologist at the time of their first appointment at the VIC. If they are interested in the program, further details are provided by PREDICT personnel.
- Participants are asked to provide a blood sample to be used for future cancer research, and permission to be contacted to learn about future research projects.
Process for Researchers
PREDICT is an open research resource for access by qualified investigators. The access process involves submission of a formal application, review of this by a PREDICT review committee, and documentation of Research Ethics Board approval for the specific research proposed.