News and Events

Targeting of tumour blood vessels in cancer treatment also on the agenda

Wednesday 26th February 2014: The 2013/2014 RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland) MiniMed Open Lecture Series continues this evening, Wednesday 26th February. A lecture will be given on the subjects of cancer therapies. This lecture is free of charge to the public and will be held in RCSI, 123 St. Stephen's Green, from 7-9pm

The lecture will be given by Dr David Murray, a Senior Research Scientist in the RCSI Department of Physiology and Medical Physics, in association with Dr Annette Byrne, Head of the Laboratory of Tumour Biology & Molecular Imaging & Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physiology and Medical Physics, and is entitled 'Tackling Cancer by Targeting Tumour Blood Vessels'. The Talk is entitled 'Tackling Cancer by Targeting Tumour Blood Vessels'. The process of 'angiogenesis' is a unifying hallmark of all cancers where blood vessels are provided to tumours to supply nutrients and oxygen, thus allowing them to develop from a few cells to a life-threatening mass that can grow and spread. Dr Murray will discuss how a better understanding of angiogenesis has allowed the development of targeted therapies (anti-angiogenics) to knock out tumour blood vessels, and in so doing, starve and shrink the tumour.

Speaking ahead of the RCSI MiniMed lecture, Dr Byrne said, 'The team at RCSI's Laboratory of Tumour Biology and Molecular Imaging are focused on developing and improving anti-angiogenic therapies for the treatment of human cancers. This work has in particular, been funded by large EU project grants such as the Angiopredict ( and AngioTox ( initiatives. During this talk, we will present an overview of angiogenesis and give an update on our research which is largely focused on improving patient treatment response. We will also highlight recent exciting data that supports the use of a new 'nanoparticle' treatment approach to improve response to anti-angiogenics for patients bearing untreatable malignant brain tumours.'

The RCSI MiniMed Open Lecture Series is free of charge; however registration is essential in order to guarantee a place. Previous lecture series have attracted widespread public interest with demand for places far outstripping availability. Register online at and you can join the conversation online, on the night, on Twitter at #RCSIMiniMed. To view previous RCSI MiniMed lectures from the last series on the RCSI YouTube channel at

Founded in 1784, RCSI's mission is to develop healthcare leaders who make a difference worldwide. RCSI is a not-for-profit health sciences organisation which focuses on education and research to drive positive change in all areas of human health worldwide. RCSI is headquartered in Dublin and is a recognised College of the National University of Ireland.


AngioPredict Consortium Meeting 17 October 2013

The Angiopredict team held their third full consortium meeting at the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin on 17 October 2013. The meeting was very successful and productive, with representatives from all partners in attendance.

Dr Annette Byrne (RCSI) chaired the meeting as Project Coordinator and host. Following Dr Byrne's introductory address, there was a short presentation and progress update on each work package, describing new research results and interactions between partners. At the end of each presentation the partners had an opportunity to discuss and engage on scientific and technical issues of interest. The meeting was a joint consortium and steering group event and so early career reseachers in particular enjoyed a valuable opportunity to share and engage with senior reseachers and principal investigators across the consortium.

During the meeting the group reviewed the administration of the project and the formal metrics in the Description of Work, tracking deadlines for upcoming deliverables and milestones. Specific tasks for the dissemination and exploitation work of the project were discussed. Dr Byrne also addressed the meeting on Intellectual Property, Ethics and gender balance.

The third constrium meeting was very productive and effective. All partners worked well together and there was detailed technical discussion on aspects of all WPs. Collaboration and contributions by the experts present helped to fine-tune next steps and identify further opportunities and avenues of enquiry.

The next full consortium meeting will be hosted by partner VIB in Leuven Belgium in October/ November 2014.

A selection of slides from the meeting are shown below:

Dr Byrne's introductory address

1) Dr. Byrne's Introductory Address

WP9 - Experimental initial conditions: Example of experimental model 2)WP9 - Experimental initial conditions:
Example of experimental model

WP9 - Exploratory use of model (pre-bv phase): formation of necrotic zones by changing model rules

WP9 - Exploratory use of model (pre-bv phase): formation of necrotic zones by changing model rules



ICORG opens ANGIOPREDICT study in Ireland and Germany

Posted: 5 June, 2013

For more information please read our page about the Clinical Trials here


AngioPredict Public Appearances

Posted: 23 March, 2013

1) Jan 22, 2013: Diether Lambrechts receives the AstraZeneca Award for Translational research for his work "Discovery and validation of genetic biomarkers for targeted cancer therapies"

2) 22-23 Feb 2013: Lecture on biomarkers for anti-angiogenic therapies in ACHOG Course on Angiogenesis in Istanbul, Turkey 

3) 27 Sept - 1 Oct 2013: Symposium on Personalised Treatment in Colorectal Cancer at the ESMO Annual Meeting in Amsterdam, The Netherlands 



AngioPredict Consortium holds Year 2 Plenary Meeting, Amsterdam (February 2013)


A year into the AngioPredict Project and the AngioPredict Consortium met in February for a very successful Plenary Meeting. 

The meeting was hosted by Partners SOMANTIX & VUmc and was held at the VUMedical Center, Amsterdam. 

All Partners were in attendance and over 2 days, progress discussions were held and plans made for the continuing success of the project. Dr Annette Byrne (Project Coordinator), above, delivered an overview of the project status, each Partner gave detailed updates of progress within the various Work Packages while the Project Management Team updated all on Project Coordination and Management. After all the hard work, the Consortium enjoyed a dinner together in the evening.  





Oct 2012, San Diego USA

The Angiogenesis Foundation


Project co-ordinator Dr Annette Byrne recently presented the ANGIOPREDICT initiative to a highly specialist audience at the Angiogenesis Foundation's 10th International M. Judah Folkman Conference: New Frontiers in Therapeutic Development, San Diego USA. Dr Byrne was invited to present at this prestigious event by the Foundation's President and Medical Director William W. Li MD. Following the Angiogenesis Biomarker Session on Day 2 of the meeting, Dr Li personally congratulated Dr Byrne and the Angiopredict team on the novel integrated multi-disciplinary paradigm to be undertaken, commenting that the future of angiogenesis inhibitor biomarker discovery likely lay in such an approach. 


AngioPredict co-ordinator, Dr. Annette Byrne and AngioPredict partner Prof William Gallagher recognized as Irish 'Champions of Research' by President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins

08 June 2012

ANGIOPREDICT Investigators Dr Annette Byrne (Project Coordinator, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland) and Professor William Gallagher (University College Dublin) were among those honoured by President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins for their work as leaders of major EU research projects at a recent event in Dublin.Their achievements were recognised at 'Ireland's Champions of EU Research' event which took place on June 2012 and was attended by President Higgins in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin. The aim of the event was to recognise the immense contribution of the 275 research project leaders from Ireland to the country's national success in the €50 billion EU Seventh EU Framework Programme for Research (FP7).


RCSI to lead major international study to improve treatment for colorectal cancer patients

25 May 2012 (Project launch Press release)

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) is leading an international team of scientists on a major research study which aims to predict colorectal cancer patients' response to the 'angiogenesis inhibitor' class of anti-cancer drug which prevents growth of tumour blood vessels. The study will facilitate a more focused therapeutic approach thus limiting side-effects in patients.

The researchers have secured approximately €6 million in competitive non-exchequer funding for the "AngioPredict" project which is supported by the European Commission's Seventh Framework 'Health' Programme (FP7).

The project will focus on patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (colorectal cancer that has spread to other parts of the body). At present, an important treatment for these patients is the 'angiogenesis inhibitor' drug Avastin (bevacizumab), which inhibits tumour blood vessel formation and thus prevents tumour growth.

This research project will investigate ways to predict how a patient will respond to Avastin, by identifying 'biomarkers' which are found in the patient's tumour tissue or blood and developing tests to identify these biomarkers. The ability to predict how a patient will respond to this drug would prevent unnecessary treatment, save critical time in patient care and improve quality of life.

The project is led by Dr Annette Byrne, Department of Physiology and Medical Physics & Centre for Systems Medicine, RCSI. "The ability to predict response will mean that more focused and personalised therapies can be delivered to cancer patients. Non-responding patients will be thus spared the side-effects of therapy and are more likely to receive optimal treatment with a minimum of delay," Dr Byrne commented.

In the developed world, colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in males and the second in females (1). 50% of colorectal cancer patients develop metastatic cancer for which Avastin is a key component of therapy (2).

AngioPredict is combining cutting-edge molecular biology, multi-centre clinical trials and optimised in-vitro diagnostic discovery approaches to establish new tests that will enable prediction of patient response to Avastin. The 'AC-Angiopredict' clinical trial will recruit 225 patients over two years from multiple centres across the island of Ireland and from Germany.

Other RCSI investigators working on the project are Prof Jochen Prehn, Prof Bryan Hennessy and Dr Heinrich Huber in collaboration with academic partners at University College Dublin, The Irish Co-operative Oncology Research Group, Vesalius Research Centre Leuven, University of Heidelberg, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam and Industry partners at Oncomark Ltd (Ireland), Epigenomics (Germany), Somantix BV (The Netherlands) and Pintail Ltd (Ireland).

Full bibliographic information

(1) Jemal, A., Bray, F., Center, M. M., Ferlay, J., Ward, E. and Forman, D. (2011), Global cancer statistics. CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, 61: 69-90. doi: 10.3322/caac.20107

(2) Strickler JH, Hurwitz HI. Bevacizumab-based therapies in the first-line treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer. Oncologist. 2012;17(4):513-24. Epub 2012 Apr 3. PubMed PMID: 22477726

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