atient advocacy groups in the US, with support from a number of pharmaceutical companies, have teamed up in an initiative to encourage lung cancer patients to take part in clinical trials.

According to the US National Cancer Institute, fewer than 5% of adult Americans diagnosed with cancer each year will enrol in a clinical trial. Low participation rates are especially problematic in lung cancer, due to its high prevalence and relatively short survival times. The American Cancer Society reports an estimated 161,840 lung cancer deaths in the US last year, accounting for 29% of all deaths from cancer.

Launched by a consortium of patient advocacy organisations including Lung Cancer Alliance, CancerCare’s lungCANCER.org, Uniting Against Lung Cancer, National Lung Cancer Partnership, LUNGevity and the Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago, The Lung Cancer Clinical Trial Call to Action incorporates a Lung Cancer Clinical Trial Matching Service.

This offers personalised education and rapid identification of clinical trial options based on the patient’s diagnosis, disease stage and treatment history. Lung cancer patients can access the service through one of the six partner organisation websites or by calling a toll-free number to connect with a clinical trial specialist.

The Call to Action is backed by a number of pharmaceutical companies active in the lung cancer field, namely Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Genentech BioOncology and Pfizer Oncology.