Greenslopes Private Hospital
Part of Ramsay Health Care


Brisbane researchers claim world-first in new melanoma trial

May 31, 2018

A new global trial into advanced melanoma has been announced at Greenslopes Private Hospital, with the Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation recruiting the study's first patient.

The GMRF’s Clinical Trials Unit, based at Greenslopes Private Hospital, was the first of 64 sites around the world to begin enrolling patients.

The clinical trial will investigate a combinational therapy for patients who have been recently diagnosed with advanced melanoma. This category of melanoma means the skin cancer has spread to lymph nodes, internal organs, bones and other sites within the body.

The combinational therapy is comprised of a registered immuno-oncology drug and a new target for the tumour environment. Potential outcomes of this trial may include disease remission or prevention of further tumour spread.

“The Clinical Trials Unit is very proud to work closely with principal investigators at Greenslopes Private Hospital such as medical oncologist Dr Victoria Atkinson to offer this clinical trial opportunity to patients undergoing cancer treatment,” said Clinical Trial Coordinator Nish Santrampurwala.

“We are always aiming to provide clinicians and patients with access to new and emerging medications, in order to convert medical advances into improved patient care. We hope this trial will bring us closer to a more effective melanoma treatment option,” said Ms Santrampuwala.

Dr Victoria Atkinson said, “While melanoma isn’t the most common cancer in 15 to 40 year olds, it is the most common cause of cancer death in that age group. Recent advancements in cancer research and clinical trials are gradually creating better treatment options and we are committed to continuing to explore new pathways to further enhance patient outcomes.”

Leon Betts, father of Brisbane sun safety campaigner Emma Betts who lost her battle with melanoma in 2017, said he supported meaningful research that focuses on helping patients in the advanced stages of the disease.

“Emma was diagnosed with melanoma at the age of 22, and was initially given three months to live. However, medical advancements prolonged her life and allowed her to fundraise and generate widespread awareness until she passed away at the age of 25 at Greenslopes Private Hospital. She was an extremely brave young woman and our family is proud to carry on her legacy of sun safety advocacy.”

The Clinical Trials Unit at the Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation has developed successful partnerships with research organisations and pharmaceutical companies to provide first-class conduct, management, and coordination of multi-centre national and international clinical research trials.

For a list of GMRF studies currently open for recruitment, visit:

To donate to the GMRF, visit:

GMRF 2018 Bronwyn and the Betts