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IMPORT LOW research changes radiotherapy practice

05 June 2018
Dr Charlotte Coles, Reader in Breast Radiation Oncology, University of Cambridge and Chief Investigator of the IMPORT LOW trial was nominated with the rest of the research team for UK British Medical Journal Research Paper 2018 award.

From the left: Dr Charlotte Coles (Chief investigator IMPORT LOW) Prof John Yarnold, ICR (former Chief Investigator) & Jo Haviland, senior statistician representing the ICR-clinical trials and statistics unitDr Charlotte Coles, Reader in Breast Radiation Oncology, University of Cambridge and Chief Investigator of the IMPORT LOW trial was nominated with the rest of the research team for UK British Medical Journal Research Paper 2018 award and attended the awards ceremony in London on 10th May.

IMPORT LOW1 is the first phase III trial reporting 5-year outcome data for local relapse and adverse effects after partial breast radiotherapy delivered using standard external beam radiotherapy techniques. It is unique by including very comprehensive patient-reported outcome measures.

At 5 years, partial breast radiotherapy delivered using a simple and standard technique, showed no increase in local relapse rates compared with whole breast radiotherapy, and produced equivalent or reduced late adverse effects. This technique is implementable worldwide with no/minimal additional resources using existing equipment.

IMPORT LOW is funded by Cancer Research UK and the trial is sponsored by the Institute of Cancer Research. Partial breast radiotherapy is now recommended as standard of care for selected patients by the UK Royal College of Radiologists Breast Radiotherapy Consensus, is included in the draft National Institute of Clinical Excellence breast cancer guidance, has been developed as an impact case by the National Institute of Health Research and is already changing practice internationally.