The Clinical Trials Research Unit (CTRU) in our hospital coordinates a wide range of clinical trials in cancer. The CTRU was established in 2000 and has opened over 150 clinical trials involving over 1,500 patients. 

What is a clinical trial?

Research discoveries in the laboratory may lead to new drug developments. Clinical trials are then conducted to establish and confirm that these new drug treatments are safe and effective when administered to patients in a controlled hospital environment. You may be asked to join clinical trials/research studies if you have a cancer diagnosis requiring drug treatment.

“Adding new treatments to existing standards of care … may often improve an individual persons cancer outcome and overall survival.” 

Professor John McCaffrey, Consultant Oncologist & Medical Director of the CTRU.

“I was monitored a lot by the Clinical Trials team… there is that extra level of care and attention due to being on a trial.” 

Diane Hanly, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital Clinical Trial Patient & Chairperson of the Clinical Trials Ireland.

An experienced team you can trust

The Mater Hospital CTRU is well established and has an experienced and committed team working to improve the outcomes for patients with cancer. The CTRU team includes consultant medical and radiation oncologists and heamatologists, research nurses, pharmacists and administration staff.

The Clinical Trials Research Unit team includes:

  • 1 clinical trials manager
  • 5 specialist research nurses
  • 1 clinical trials pharmacist
  • 4 data managers
  • A business manager and an administrator
  • 8 consultant principal investigators

CTRU Information

Our principal investigators

Oncology/Radiation Consultants:

Prof John. McCaffrey

Dr. Catherine Kelly

Prof Michaela Higgins

Dr. Michael Maher

Dr. David Gallagher

Haematology Consultants:

Prof Peter O’Gorman

Dr. Anne Fortune

Dr. Michael Fay

Our open clinical trials

Select a cancer type below to view our open clinical trials and studies.

Breast cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Early Hormone positive/Her 2 Negative CTRIAL-IE 14-11 M028048 / PENELOPE B Phase III study evaluating palbociclib (PD‐0332991), a Cyclin‐Dependent Kinase (CDK) 4/6 Inhibitor in patients with Hormone‐receptor‐positive,HER2‐normal primary breast cancer with high relapse risk after neoadjuvant chemotherapy
Early Hormone positive/Her 2 Negative CTRIAL-IE 15-17 PALLAS/ BIG 14-03 A randomized phase 3 trial of Palbociclib with adjuvant endocrine therapy versus endocrine therapy alone for hormone receptor positive/HER2-negative breast cancer
Early Triple Negative CTRIAL-IE  NeoTRIPaPDL1 Neo-Adjuvant study with the PDL1-directed antibody in Triple Negative Locally Advanced Breast Cancer undergoing treatment with nabpaclitaxel and carboplatin NeoTRIPaPDL1 (Neoadjuvant therapy in TRIPle negative breast cancer with antiPDL1)
Metastatic Hormone positive/Her 2 Negative CTRIAL-IE 15-16 GEICAM/2014-12 The Flipper Study A randomised, double-blind. Parallel-group, multicentre, Phase II study to compare the efficacy and tolerability of fulvestrant (FaslodexTM ) 500mg with placebo and fulvestrant (FaslodexTM ) 500mg in combination with PD-0332991 (Palbociclib) as first line treatment for postmenopausal women with hormone receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer, who have completed at least 5 years of adjuvant endocrine therapy and remained disease free for more than 12 months following its completion or have "de novo" metastatic disease. "the Flipper Study
Metastatic Hormone positive/Her 2 Negative CTRIAL-IE 14-22 Bay BC Ra233 Bayer 16298 Radium Breast Study Study B: A Phase II randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of Radium-223 Dichloride vs placebo when administered to Her2 neg hormone receptor positive breast cancer with bone metastases treated with standard of care hormonal treatment
Metastatic Triple Negative CTRIAL-IE 15-33 MERCK MK-3475-119  Breast A randomised Open-Label Phase III study of Single Agent Pembrolizumab versus treatment of Physician's Choice monotherapy for metastatic triple negative Breast Cancer (mTNBC)-(KEYNOTE-119)
Metastatic Triple Negative CTRIAL-IE MERCK 3475-355 Breast study A Randomized, Double-Blind Phase III Study of Pembrolizumab (MK-3475) plus Chemotherapy vs Placebo plus Chemotherapy for Previously Untreated Inoperable Locally Recurrent or Metastatic Triple Negative Breast Cancer – (KEYNOTE-355). 
Metastatic BRCA positive  CTRIAL-IE 14-01 BIOMARIN BMN 373-301 TRIO 023 A Phase 3, Open-Label, Randomised, Parallel, 2-Arm, Multi-Center Study of BNM 673 versus Physician’s Choice in Germline BRCA Mutation Subjects with Locally Advanced and/or Metastatic Breast Cancer, Who Have Progressed No More than 2 Prior Chemotherapy Regimens for Metastatic Disease.
Translational/Observational CTRIAL-IE 12-40 EORTC 10085 Male breast Cancer Clinical and biological characterization of Male Breast Cancer: an international EORTC, BIG, TBCRC and NABCG intergroup study.  (Part B Prospective)

Gastro-Intestinal cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Metastatic Bowel (Colorectal) Cancer CTRIAL-IE 14-20 GRECOR STRATEGIC - 1 Multi-Line Therapy Trial in Unresectable Wild-Type RAS Metastatic Colorectal Cancer. A GERCOR Randomised Open-Label Phase III study.
Primary Liver Cancer (Hepatocellular) CTRIAL-IE 14-17 Exelixis XL184-309 CELESTIAL A Phase 3 Randomised Double Blind Controlled Study Of Cabozantinib (XL184) vs Placebo In Previously Treated Subjects With Hepatocellular Carcinoma.
Translational/Observational CTRIAL-IE 08-40 SNP Correlation of Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) profile of domain III of EGFR to skin and/or eye toxicity and disease response to treatment with Cetuximab or Panitumumab.

Genito-Urinary cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Metastatic Kidney (Renal Cell) CTRIAL-IE MK3475-426 Renal Cell Carcinoma A Phase III randomized, open-label, clinical trial to study the efficacy and safety of Pembrolizumab (MK-3475) in combination with axitinib versus sunitinib monotherapy as a first-line treatment for  advanced or metastatic clear-cell renal cell carcinoma.
Early Prostate CTRIAL-IE 14-07 ANZUP/ENZARAD A Randomised phase III trial of radiation plus androgen deprivation therapy with or without Enzalutamide for high risk, clinically localised, prostate cancer.
Metastatic Prostate CTRIAL-IE 13-21 Radium 223 A Phase II Study of Radium-223 in Combination with Enzalutamide in Progressive Metastatic Castrate-Resistant Prostate Cancer.
Metastatic Prostate CTRIAL-IE 13-09 / GETUG-AFU 21 / PEACE-1 A prospective randomised phase III study of androgen deprivation therapy with or without local radiotherapy with or without abiraterone acetate and prednisone in patient with metastatic hormone-naïve prostate cancer.
Metastatic Prostate CTRIAL-IE 14-06 ANZUP 1304 / ENZAMET Randomised phase 3 trial of enzalutamide in first line androgen deprivation therapy for metastatic prostate cancer.
Translational/Observational CTRIAL-IE 14-04 iPROSPECT  Irish Programme for Stratified Prostate Cancer Therapy (iPROSPECT)
Translational/Observational CTRIAL-IE 15-21 ExPeCT Translation study  The ExPeCT Trial (Exercise, Prostate cancer and Circulating Tumour cells). Evasion of immune editing by circulating tumour cells is an exercise-modifiable mechanism underlying aggressive behaviour in obese men with prostate cancer.

Lung cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Early Lung Cancer CTRIAL-IE 15-40 MK3475-091 (EORTC 1416- LCG, PEARLS) early stage NSCLC study  A randomized, phase 3 trial with anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody pembrolizumab (MK-3475) versus placebo for patients with early stage NSCLC after resection and completion of standard adjuvant therapy (PEARLS).
Metastatic Lung Cancer CTRIAL-IE 12-53 / ETOP SPLENDOUR Randomised Phase 3 trial evaluating the addition of Denosumab to standard first-line anticancer treatment in advanced NSCLC.

Lymphoma cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Untreated Lymphoma CTRIAL-IE 15-08 / cc-5013-dlc-002 / ROBUST (Celgene)  Phase 3 Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter study to compare the efficacy and safety of Lenalidomide (CC-5013) plus R-CHOP Chemotherapy (R2-CHOP) verus placebo plus R-CHOP Chemotherapy in subjects with previously untreated activated B-Cell Type Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma.
Relapsed Lymphoma CTRIAL-IE 15-38 Bayer 17067/CHRONOS 3/Phase III A Phase III, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluating the efficacy and safety of copanlisib in combination with rituximab in patients with relapsed indolent B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (iNHL) – CHRONOS-3 (Bayer 17067).
Translational/Observational CTRIAL-IE 15-09 MILLENNIUM ARROVEN  MILLENNIUM ARROVEN Post-Authorization Safety Study (Brentuximab vedotin in R/R Hodgkins Lymphoma).

Myeloma cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Untreated Myeloma CTRIAL-IE 12-02/ECOG E3A06  Randomised Phase III Trial of Lenalidomide Versus Observation Alone in Patients with Asymptomatic High-Risk Smoldering Multiple Myeloma.

Ovarian cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Untreated Ovarian CTRIAL-IE 11-29 ICON 8 B A randomised controlled trial comparing weekly chemotherapy +/- bevacizumab to standard 3-weekly chemotherapy + bevacizumab for women with recently diagnosed ovarian cancer.
Untreated Ovarian CTRIAL-IE 16-05 Pfizer B9991010 Javelin Ovarian 100 Randomized, Open-Label, Multicenter, Phase 3 Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Avelumab (MSB0010718C) in Combination with and/or Following Chemotherapy in Patients with Previously Untreated Epithelial Ovarian Cancer Study (JAVELIN Ovarian 100).

Prostate cancer clinical trials

Cancer sub-typeStudy nameFull title of study
Metastatic Prostate CTRIAL-IE 19-09 Sanofi CARD A randomized, open label, multicentre study of Cabazitaxel versus an Androgen Receptor (AR)-targeted agent (abiraterone or enzalutamide) in mCRPC patients previously treated with Docetaxel and who rapidly failed a prior AR-targeted agent (CARD).

Contact us

Clinical Trials & Research Studies

Cancer medicine (oncology)

For information on our open or upcoming clinical trials, please contact our Clinical Trials Research Unit.

Further useful information

For information on clinical trials in Ireland see: