ORIEN Adds Three Leading Oncology Institutions to Growing Precision Cancer Research Collaboration

ORIEN partnership founded by The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and Moffitt Cancer Center adds three new members, widens patient access to precision clinical trials

Orien Oncology Research Information Exchange NetworkAmid growing recognition of the role of “big data” and data sharing in advancing cancer research, the Oncology Research Information Exchange Network (ORIEN) has announced three new members, bringing the total to nine. The unique research partnership among North America’s top cancer centers and anchored by Moffitt Cancer Center and The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute has added Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, Morehouse School of Medicine and the University of Southern California (USC) Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Standardized Protocol Expedites Collaboration
Launched in May 2014, ORIEN enhances precision cancer medicine efforts already in place at member organizations by enabling unprecedented research opportunities driving greater collaboration. All ORIEN members use a single protocol, Total Cancer Care® (TCC). To date, more than 124,000 TCC-consented patients have agreed to donate their tissue and clinical data for research to understand cancer at the molecular level. ORIEN members share de-identified data to accelerate the development of precision medicine and treatments, which enables researchers and clinicians to more quickly match eligible patients to clinical trials and conduct larger and more comprehensive analyses.

“It is increasingly apparent that molecular profiling of tumors will shrink the number of patients eligible for a clinical trial of an agent that targets a specific mutation.  Bringing on more partners in ORIEN accelerates our ability to conduct such trials,” said Thomas Sellers, Ph.D., M.P.H., center director and executive vice president of Moffitt. “The addition of new centers to ORIEN and their cancer patients to the TCC registry further empowers ORIEN to speed clinical research and provide more than 60,000 cancer patients access to trials that target their specific cancers.”

Expanding Opportunity for Patients
Through federal initiatives aimed at infusing funds into the growing field of precision medicine, ORIEN is growing at a time when the national spotlight is turned to the field’s potential and promise to discover targeted treatments. ORIEN leaders stress that this recognition illustrates the need for continued collaboration among oncology experts to identify cutting-edge treatments for patients and to improve care. 

“ORIEN, in collaboration with leading cancer centers throughout the country, provides cancer patients with greater access to clinical trials specific to their cancer type. This collaboration and cooperation among a growing number of ORIEN centers means patients may not need to travel far from home to participate,” said Michael Caligiuri, M.D., director of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and CEO of the James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. “The ORIEN network of cancer centers is made up of true partners in data exchange and we are proud to extend these benefits to patients in the form of genomic data research that will help us better understand cancer at the molecular level and hopefully develop more targeted cancer treatments.”

Additional ORIEN members include City of Hope, University of Virginia Cancer Center, University of Colorado Cancer Center and University of New Mexico Cancer Center. ORIEN operations, through M2Gen, support collaborative research by managing funding, access to data, trial matching governance and client relationships.

“Becoming part of ORIEN adds great opportunities for Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, enabling discovery based on large-scale, diverse population data as well as patient-specific clinical decision support across a broad, national clinical trial portfolio,” said Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Director Robert S. DiPaola, M.D.

“Morehouse School of Medicine is honored to partner and collaborate with such distinguished institutions and to work towards developing a better treatment model for cancer patients,” said James W. Lillard, Ph.D., MBA, associate dean for research and professor of microbiology, biochemistry and immunology. “The cancer care and research community at MSM has seen significant growth over the past five years; doubling the number of oncologists and quadrupling the amount of translational research funding.  Partnering with ORIEN has tremendous potential to propel cancer research forward and reduce cancer health disparities.”  

“It was a natural fit for USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center to join ORIEN, as personalized patient care has been a key component of our strategic plan,” said USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center Director Stephen B. Gruber, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H. “We are proud to partner with ORIEN founders and members to collaborate to change the treatment model for oncology.”

“We are thrilled to have these leading cancer institutions as part of ORIEN.  Together we are building one of the largest and most diverse data warehouse efforts that will allow us to follow and learn from patients to better understand their needs and develop evidence-based approaches to meet those needs,”  said William S. Dalton, Ph.D., M.D., CEO of M2Gen. 

About Moffitt Cancer Center
Located in Tampa, Moffitt is one of only 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers, a distinction that recognizes Moffitt’s excellence in research, its contributions to clinical trials, prevention and cancer control. Moffitt is the top-ranked cancer hospital in the Southeast and has been listed in U.S. News & World Report as one of the “Best Hospitals” for cancer since 1999. With more than 4,500 employees, Moffitt has an economic impact on the state of nearly $1.6 billion.

About The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute
The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute strives to create a cancer-free world by integrating scientific research with excellence in education and patient-centered care, a strategy that leads to better methods of prevention, detection and treatment. Ohio State is one of only 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers and one of only four centers funded by the NCI to conduct both phase I and phase II clinical trials on novel anticancer drugs. As the cancer program’s 306-bed adult patient-care component, The James is one of the top cancer hospitals in the nation as ranked by U.S. News & World Report and has achieved Magnet designation, the highest honor an organization can receive for quality patient care and professional nursing practice. At 21 floors with more than 1.1 million square feet, The James is a transformational facility that fosters collaboration and integration of cancer research and clinical cancer care. For more information, please visit cancer.osu.edu.

About Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey (www.cinj.org) is the state’s first and only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. As part of Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, the Cancer Institute of New Jersey is dedicated to improving the detection, treatment and care of patients with cancer, and to serving as an education resource for cancer prevention. Physician-scientists at the Cancer Institute engage in translational research, transforming their laboratory discoveries into clinical practice, quite literally bringing research to life.

About Morehouse School of Medicine
Founded in 1975, Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) is among the nation’s leading educators of primary care physicians, biomedical scientists and public health professionals. In 2011, MSM was recognized by Annals of Internal Medicine as the nation’s No. 1 medical school in fulfilling a social mission. MSM faculty and alumni are noted for excellence in teaching, research and public policy, as well as exceptional patient care.

MSM is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award doctoral and master’s degrees. For more information, please visit http://www.msm.edu.

About USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center
USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center has been leading the fight to make cancer a disease of the past. As one of the eight original comprehensive cancer centers in the United States, our mission is to treat and prevent cancer by advancing and integrating education, research, and personalized patient care. For 40 years, we have been revolutionizing cancer research with innovative surgical techniques and novel cancer treatments. Our breakthroughs and discoveries in the field of epigenetics have led the way to a greater understanding of the underlying causes of cancer and new methods of prevention, detection, and treatment. With a multidisciplinary team of over 250 dedicated scientists and physicians, we offer patients hope in the battle against cancer.

About M2Gen®
M2Gen® is Moffitt Cancer Center’s wholly owned, for-profit, informatics solution subsidiary advancing personalized medicine by using high quality tissue, clinical data and molecular technology to accelerate the discovery and delivery of personalized medicine.  Using a rapid learning approach, the goal of M2Gen is to accelerate the science of precision medicine by creating evidence and knowledge-based solutions that identify a patient’s susceptibility to disease, predict how the patient will respond to a particular drug, and match patients to the best therapies for an optimal treatment outcome. M2Gen, along with Moffitt and partnering community hospitals, has created a large, cancer-focused, biorepository linked to clinical and molecular data. For more information, visit www.m2gen.com.


Michele Fisher