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Cancer center offers free app for clinical trials

The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit hopes its in-house-produced iPhone and iPad application for cancer research will help thousands of patients and physicians locate an appropriate clinical trial.

The KCI Trials App is primarily designed for physicians who are searching for clinical trials for their own patients who are not responding to standard cancer treatment.

However, patients or their families also can use the app to locate the latest possible cancer treatment options.

"It is important that physicians are familiar with new treatment options available through our clinical trials program," Connie Claybaker, Karmanos associate center director of research administration, said in a statement.

In the past 12 months, Karmanos has begun nearly 325 clinical trials.

Claybaker said Karmanos' clinical trials portfolio features a wide variety of new investigational trials for cancer patients, many which define new standards of care.

The new free app, which cost $1,515 to develop, allows users to search for cancer clinical trials by disease site, keyword, protocol number, phase or principal investigator.

The information displayed for each trial includes the title, objective, principal investigator, disease sites, drugs involved and eligibility criteria.

Users also have the option to save protocol information to their favorite list and email protocol information to a colleague or patient directly from the app.

"The ultimate goal is to make it as easy as possible for referring physicians and other healthcare professionals to find a clinical trial that may benefit their patients," said Anthony Shields, M.D., Karmanos' associate center director of clinical sciences, in a statement.

"With this app, a physician could be meeting with the patient and quickly identify a clinical trial that offers a possible new treatment for consideration."

The KCI Trials App also includes buttons to call and email Karmanos Cancer Institute, provides information about Phase I studies and links to the National Cancer Institute.

An Android version is expected to be available by early 2014.

"Karmanos offers free app for cancer research trials" originally appeared in Crain's Detroit Business.

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