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A 45 percent increase in cancer diagnoses in the U.S. is expected by 2030. Without the rapid initiation and development of promising cancer clinical trials, the availability of potentially curative therapies for this expanding cohort of cancer patients will be severely limited.

A high-functioning clinical trials enterprise is crucial for the design and implementation of prevention, early detection and treatment modalities, and, ultimately, cancer cures.  Consequently, clinical trials in the U.S. face a range of serious obstacles including growing complexity, administrative barriers, regulatory constraints, expanding staffing requirements, increasing trial costs and lagging patient accrual.

To address these challenges, AACI established the Clinical Research Initiative (CRI) in 2009. Acting as a network for cancer center clinical research leaders, CRI examines and shares best practices that promote the efficient operation of cancer center clinical research facilities, and leverages the ability of AACI cancer centers to collectively advocate for improvement in the national clinical trials enterprise.

CRI is open exclusively to clinical research leaders from AACI’s 93 cancer centers. These leaders possess a comprehensive knowledge of their center’s clinical trials system, and they fill a variety of roles at their institutions.

Keys to CRI’s success include the development of new tools and methods to share information across the AACI network of cancer centers, and the dissemination of proven means of effectiveness and best practice models that lead to increased access to new cancer therapies.

CRI convened its sixth annual membership meeting July 9-11, 2014 in Rosemont, IL. This year’s meeting hosted 189 clinical research leaders from 59 cancer centers who discussed a variety of issues related to the conduct of cancer clinical trials at the nation’s cancer centers.  AACI received 24 abstract submissions and the AACI CRI Steering Committee selected three of the best abstracts for presentation. In addition, 16 posters of abstract submissions were displayed at the meeting. Click here to view the 2014 AACI CRI abstracts.