The projects supported by ACCRF fall into three broad categories, each of which is essential to reaching the goal of improved patient outcomes.
Specimens & Models
Researchers investigating ACC need certain building blocks as the foundation of their experiments. Biobanks (repositories for tumors, saliva, plasma and other specimens), cell lines (tumor cells grown in dishes) and animal models (tumors grown typically in mice) are readily available for researchers looking at common cancers. Unfortunately, these specimens and models are very difficult to obtain for researchers looking at rare cancers. ACCRF is committed to increasing the availability of – and access to – these crucial building blocks of research.
In order to accelerate the development of improved therapies, it is prudent to invest in projects that reveal the mechanisms of action that are driving the genesis, development and progression of ACC. By understanding which molecular drivers and environmental factors are leading to the cancer, researchers will be in a better position to propose and develop effective treatments. ACCRF and its Scientific Advisory Board believe that supporting basic research is a necessary and pivotal step in hastening the discovery of improved therapies.
The eventual goal of all research is to get treatment ideas from “the bench” (the research laboratory) to “the bedside” (patients in the clinic). Before a novel therapy can reach the bedside, however, it must pass many tests of safety and efficacy. ACCRF is preparing an open and efficient infrastructure to conduct high-throughput screening of compounds in cell lines and animal models. In addition, ACCRF is exploring ways to support clinical trials for ACC patients, whether for novel compounds or drugs already approved for other indications.
The following schematic diagram portrays how the different project categories fit together to work
towards ACCRF’s goals:
ACCRF Research Agenda Framework
Download the ACCRF Research Agenda Framework
The ACCRF Research Agenda does not describe a sequential process. Rather, parallel progress is being made across all the priority project areas. And the intent is not to generate one best translatable concept. Instead, ACCRF is committed to generating a series of high-quality clinical concepts, each of which may not pan out, but, in aggregate, will increase the likelihood of benefitting patients over time.
ACCRF constantly seeks to improve its Research Agenda and to learn about new avenues of research that might benefit ACC patients. All comments and suggestions are welcome, and may be directed here.