Published in the January 2013 Newsletter

As the new ECOG-ACRIN organization seeks to integrate the needs of its broadened base of imaging and clinical research professionals, many exciting changes are in the offing—including the transition to a new education track, which formally began at the ECOG-ACRIN Fall 2012 Group Meeting. Prior to the merger, ECOG and ACRIN each offered a program that accommodated the specialization of therapeutic- and imaging-based research associates, respectively. Even the nature and purpose of the programs differed: ECOG offered training sessions, whereas ACRIN offered education sessions.

Research associates (RAs), as they are known in the imaging community, and clinical research associates (CRAs), as they are referred to in the clinical community, work across ECOG-ACRIN’s nearly 650 member institutions, where they play a vital role in supporting their institution’s participation in clinical trials conducted with ECOG-ACRIN and other cooperative groups. RAs and CRAs have a wide range of responsibilities, which were summarized in a recent article by ACRIN colleagues as “preparing institutional review board submissions, maintaining regulatory documents, screening potential research participants, participating in the informed consent process, scheduling tests and treatments, completing and submitting case report forms, following the participants in accordance with protocol requirements, and ensuring compliance with hospital and federal regulations and Good Clinical Practice.”1

Education sessions at the Fall 2012 Group Meeting were intended to further the knowledge of all professionals affiliated with clinical trials, and all registered attendees were welcomed and encouraged to attend. This was a more expansive audience than either ECOG or ACRIN had previously engaged. For example, at previous ECOG meetings, some sessions were geared toward junior level CRAs or those new to the cooperative group research setting; however, such introductory sessions were not provided at the recent meeting. The new ECOG-ACRIN organization will continue to refine its education track for upcoming meetings. The transition plan includes placing junior level education sessions on the ecog-acrin.org website in the form of narrated slideshows that will be accessible at any time. The education track was organized by Lorna Beccaria, BS, RN, CCRC; Julianne Burns; Brigid Doherty; and Wendy Smith, BS, RT(R) (CV). Several ECOG-ACRIN scientific committee leaders served as presenters, along with protocol study chairs. The sessions and their presenters are listed below. An audience feedback survey was administered during the meeting. Attendees who were unable to complete the survey at the meeting can submit feedback to Brigid Doherty or Julianne Burns at the ECOG-ACRIN Coordinating Center in Boston.

Session Name Presenter
The Approach to the Patient with a Climbing PSA
after Local Therapy
Michael A. Carducci, MD, FACP
Tomosynthesis vs. Digital Mammography Etta Pisano, MD
Bevacizumab in Non‐Small Cell Lung Cancer Heather Wakely, MD
How to Handle Radiation Exposure from Imaging
Tests in Clinical Trials
Harold Litt, MD, PhD
RAVE Updates Lucille Patrichuk, BSN, MBA
Social Media in Research: What Does the IRB
Care About?
Melissa Abraham, PhD
Registering Patients with OPEN Emily Engler
Sample Tracking System Demonstration Megan Creamer
How to do a Better Job at Budgets and Compliance Kelly Willenberg, BSN, MBA, CHRC, CHC
ACRIN Imaging Core Lab and Regulatory
Round Tables
ACRIN staff
ECOG Protocol E2810 Leonard J. Applebaum, MD, PhD
ACRIN Protocol 6685 Irene Mahone, RN, MPH
Importance of Sample Quality Elisabeth Paietta, MD, PhD
E2410: Protocol Ranjana Advani, MD
E2410: Imaging Protocol Lale Kostakoglu, MD, MPH
E2410: Imaging Core Lab Anthony Levering, RT(R) (CT) (MR), CIIP
E2410: Questions and Answers Anthony Levering, RT(R) (CT) (MR), CIIP
RECIST 1.1 Training Workshop Julianne Burns, Brigid Doherty
AdEERS Training Workshops Judi Hart

1Smith W, Salenius S, Cobb C, Marzan R, Sabina S, Beccaria L, Sitton-Petro T, Werner DL, Kamm M, Lenz S, Taylor T. A survey of clinical research coordinators in the cooperative group setting of the American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ACRIN). Acad Radiol. 2010;17(11): 1449–1454. View the abstract.