Dr. Robert Olson’s Breakthrough Finding for Use of High-Dose Radiation Therapy

Dr. Robert Olson, Associate Head, Research in the UBC Department of Surgery and Head of the UBC Division of Radiation Oncology, suggested a new method for minimizing side effects in cancer patients going through radiation therapy.

SABR, a form of high-precision cancer therapy, targets tumour sites with high doses of radiation in one or several treatment sessions. Compared to previous-generation radiation therapies, SABR shows a significantly higher rate of control over the spread of cancer cells while minimising side effects, which previously often could be detrimental. Dr. Olson is in the process of conducting the follow-up ongoing phase III international trial titled SABR-COMET-3 looking into the potential of this therapy to increase the patient survival rate.

“The current SABR-COMET-3 trial is highly anticipated within the international Radiation Oncology community, and It builds on the success of the landmark SABR-COMET and SABR-5 phase II trials”, says Dr. Olson. “We are proud of the fact that we are leading potentially paradigm changing clinical trials from BC Cancer – Prince George. Furthermore, we have designed innovative procedures into SABR-COMET-3, allowing for follow-up of patients in their rural and remote home communities, a demonstration of our commitment to leading decentralizing of clinical trials.”

The current SABR-COMET-3 trial receives support from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research, the BC Cancer Foundation, and Varian Medical Systems.