Our campaign to get approval for a nationwide lung cancer screening programme.
In the UK, lung cancer is the largest cause of cancer deaths, killing over 35,000 people per year; few recognise that more women die of lung cancer than breast, ovarian and cervical cancer combined. There is no screening programme for lung cancer however, unlike those which exist for breast and bowel cancer.
With this exhibition we want to draw attention to the urgent need for a nationwide screening programme for lung cancer. We want to detect lung cancer early and give many more people the chance to be treated successfully and to live longer. It is inequitable that only those who were lucky enough to be invited to take part in the ECLS trial and who are featured in this exhibition, were given that chance. Thousands more deserve to be given extra time.
If you would like to demonstrate your support for our campaign to get UK governments and the NHS to agree to a lung cancer screening programme please write to your local MP and pledge your support for people like those in this exhibition to get the early diagnosis and the medical help they need.
The ECLS trial, conducted in Scotland, is believed to be the largest randomised controlled trial using blood biomarkers for the detection of lung cancer ever undertaken.
Through TV and radio appeals, through outreach at football matches, shopping centres and pubs; heavy smokers and exsmokers were asked to take part. 78,000 letters went from GPs to patients. Tens of thousands of phone calls were made and 12,209 volunteers were recruited, over half of them from the most deprived population.
After six years of work, the positive results from the ECLS trial were announced at the World Conference for Lung Cancer in Barcelona in 2019. The ECLS trial showed a 36% reduction in late stage presentation after two years and a reduced mortality rate. Many individuals had their lung cancer diagnosed early enough for successful treatment and some of their stories are told in this exhibition.
The trial was open to adults aged 50-75 considered to be at high risk of lung cancer because of smoking and family history, and healthy enough to undergo potentially curative therapy.
The intervention was the EarlyCDT Lung test, followed by X-ray and computerized tomography (CT) scan in those with a positive test results. The comparator was standard clinical practice in the UK. The primary endpoint was the difference, at 24 months after randomisation, between the rates of patients with stage III, IV or unclassified lung cancer at diagnosis in the intervention arm and those in the control arm.
The trial was sponsored by the University of Dundee and NHS Tayside and co-funded by the Scottish Chief Scientist Office, Scottish Government and Oncimmune. It was headed by Chief Investigators Frank Sullivan, Professor of Primary Care Medicine at the University of St Andrews, and Dr Stuart Schembri, until recently consultant Physician in Respiratory and General Internal Medicine at NHS Tayside.
Oncimmune is now working hard communicating to clinicians, politicians, policy makers and the NHS to get support for a national screening programme for lung cancer using this simple, effective and affordable blood test.
The battle against cancer hinges on early detection and then the delivery of effective treatment. Oncimmune is working to revolutionise both the detection of cancer and its treatment by harnessing the sophisticated disease detecting capabilities of the immune system to find cancer in its early stages. Our range of diagnostic tests assist clinicians to identify the presence of cancer four years or more before standard clinical diagnosis, whilst our technology platform and sample biobanks are helping healthcare companies to develop new cancer treatments.
Oncimmune was founded in 2002 and launched its platform technology in 2009, followed by its first commercial tests, EarlyCDT® Lung and EarlyCDT Liver. To date, over 160,000 tests have been performed for patients worldwide.
Headquartered at its laboratory facility in Nottingham, UK, Oncimmune has a discovery research centre in Dortmund, Germany and an office in London, UK and a partner representative office in Shanghai, China. Oncimmune joined the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange in May 2016 under the ticker ONC.L.