Breast International Group

The Breast International Group (BIG) is a non-profit organisation for academic breast cancer research groups from around the world, with its Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.

BIG facilitates breast cancer research at international level by stimulating cooperation between its members and other academic networks, and collaborating with, but working independently from, the pharmaceutical industry. Large-scale cooperation is crucial to make significant advances in breast cancer research, reduce wasteful duplication of effort, and optimally serve those affected by the disease.

Founded by leading European opinion leaders in 1996, BIG now constitutes a network of 50 groups based in Europe, Canada, Latin America, Asia and Australasia. These research entities are tied to several thousand specialised hospitals and research centres worldwide. About 30 clinical trials are run or are under development under the BIG umbrella. BIG also works closely with the US National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the North American Breast Cancer Group (NABCG), so that together they act as a strong integrating force in the breast cancer research arena.

International collaboration makes it possible to conduct studies that would not be possible for a single research group or network to carry out on its own, especially as treatments become increasingly targeted. Combining efforts makes it possible to quickly enrol large numbers of patients, or to share data and knowledge and efficiently answer important scientific questions. Faster results mean faster direct benefits to patients.


BIG will lead the Knowledge management Work Package of the project (WP10). BIG will play a key role in providing clinical expertise related to large multicentric clinical trials in breast cancer, and will contribute to the definition of user requirements in the context of EURECA clinical scenarios (WP1: User needs). In addition, BIG, taking advantage of its experience as Network of Excellence leader (FP6 TRANSBIG), will contribute to the dissemination and exploitation activities of the Consortium. Finally, BIG will contribute to the definition of the legal and regulatory frameworks applicable to the project and to the evaluation and validation of the clinical scenarios at the pilot sites. Scenarios concerning improved patient recruitment, and protocol design and feasibility will be implemented in the context of BIG-led completed clinical trials.


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