'Blood, Sweat and Tears of Joy' Educational Evening

‘Blood, Sweat and Tears of Joy’ Educational Evening

On Thursday 11th October, Blood Cancer Research Western Australia hosted an educational evening, ‘Blood, Sweat and Tears of Joy’ in conjunction with the Snowdome Foundation at the University of Western Australia. Hosted by Wendy Erber, Dean of UWA Medical School and Chaired by Professor David Joske, the evening provided an update on current research and trials.

Our very own Dr Chan Cheah presented during the evening, sharing details of the current progress in the WALCRE, which saw an increase in the number of trials open and available to patients, including two world first, first in human studies. Dr Cheah then went on to discuss the alliance between the trials units at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Hollywood Private Hospital and Linear Clinical Research, offering a flexible platform to maximise the opportunities available to WA Blood Cancer patients to access potentially life-saving new drugs.

The attendees were also fortunate enough to have the opportunity to hear from Rita Zuks, a patient who has taken part in two clinical trials. Rita shared her experiences of the trials, which resulted in complete remissions on two consecutive studies for an aggressive lymphoma that had been refractory to many types of chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant.

Dr Chan Cheah then joined a panel alongside Dr Carolyn Grove, Dr Gavin Cull, Dr Brad Auguston and Rita Zuks to discuss current unmet needs in clinical research.

All round, the evening provided fantastic insights into the latest breakthroughs in finding a cure for Blood Cancers.

Two new trials open for patients with B-cell lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Two new phase I studies for patients with relapsed/refractory B-cell lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia have just opened at Linear Clinical Research.

Both explore new medicines with established mechanisms of action. TG-1701 is Btk inhibitor, and the bispecific engaging T-cell antibody mosentuzumab is a form of immunotherapy. They represent good options for eligible patients with B-cell lymphomas.

UNITY-NHL open at Hollywood Private Hospital

The UNITY-NHL study is now open at Hollywood Private Hospital. This phase IIB study is exploring the phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase delta inhibitor, umbralisib, either alone or in combination with an antibody against CD20 ublituximab in patients with  previously treated follicular lymphoma, small lymphocytic lymphoma and marginal zone lymphoma. For more information visit the trial home page or speak to your Haematologist.

We will be opening the study at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in September to October 2018 for public patients.

ALLG HD10/ GHSG HD21 study open at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital

The HD21 study, an Australiasian Leukaemia and Lymphoma Group collaboration with the German Hodgkin lymphoma stud group, is now open at SCGH.

This is the largest ever study to be performed in patients with advanced stage Hodgkin lymphoma, with a target recruitment of 1,600 patients in 10 countries. This is a randomized study comparing standard chemotherapy (BEACOPP escalated) to a new combination containing the antibody drug brentuximab vedotin (BreCADD). The question is whether this improves outcomes and reduces side effects in treatment-naive patients with  stage IIB – IV Hodgkin lymphoma.

For more information, visit

or ask your Haematologist 

WA Lymphoma Centre for Research Excellence launch

Perth philanthropists raise $300,000 to support Western Australian Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence  

On Tuesday April 24th Snowdome held a gala dinner at the Wildflower restaurant, COMO The Treasury to raise funds for a Western Australian Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence.   The Centre aims to enable lymphoma patients’ access to clinical trials in their home state. Clinical trials are a gateway to next-generation treatments that are often the last hope for patients who have failed conventional therapies.

The 87 distinguished guests had the opportunity to hear from Snowdome Director and co-founder Professor Miles Prince on the rationale behind why Snowdome exists and the importance of Snowdome in funding cutting edge research that would otherwise take years to come to fruition. Dr Chan Cheah who is leading the initiative passionately spoke about why the Lymphoma Research Centre of Excellence is so important to him. Dr Cheah noted that during his training at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Melbourne) and MD Anderson Cancer Center (Houston, Texas) he saw how world-class centres of cancer research operated and aspires to offering this service to patients with blood cancer in WA.

A patient who has already benefited from the Centre of Research Excellence spoke about the difference being in a clinical trial has made to her life, without having to travel interstate. She noted how fortunate Perth lymphoma patients are to now have access to next-generation treatments.

Guests on the night were clearly impressed with the benefit to WA and the pressing need for Lymphoma patients. The guests very generously raised in excess of $300,000 to ensure the Centre of Research Excellence will be well resourced to run cutting-edge clinical trials.

It would be remiss not to mention Rachael Doherty, a brave and courageous young girl from Perth who’s fight with lymphoma had her travel to Melbourne on a regular basis over 6 years for expert care at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. It would give Rachael the greatest pleasure to know that there is now a dedicated cancer facility in Perth so patients and their families might be spared a lot of what she and her family had to endure.

Snowdome is incredibly grateful for the generosity of Adrian and Michela Fini, as well as the support of our pro-bono major sponsors COMO The Treasury and Wildflower. We would also like to thank our collaborative partners Linear, Lymphoma Australia, The Rachael Doherty Foundation, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, and The University of Western Australia for their support.



2018 Dinner At Wildflower Perth

Western Australian Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence

The gala dinner at Wildflower in Perth has sold out! If you would like to support the WA Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence by making a tax deductible donation, please click here and select ‘WA Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence’ under ‘Type of Donation’. 100% of your donation will go towards this important research. Alternatively, please feel free to contact us on 03 9005 0814

Make a difference in the fight against blood cancer. Our talented panel of blood cancer researchers – including Dr Chan Cheah – share a common passion to set up the Western Australian Lymphoma Centre of Research Excellence, a world-class centre of research and innovation to help blood cancer patients live longer, better lives.

Blood cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in Australia with more than 1000 Western Australians diagnosed with blood cancer (leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma) each year. While they have access to some of the world’s finest medical care, this isn’t always enough.

If current treatments are unsuccessful, a patient’s only option may be a new therapy available through a clinical trial at the cutting-edge of research. There are many new and exciting blood cancer therapies under development around the world. However, there are very few clinical trials for blood cancers available to patients in WA. Seriously ill patients seeking access to innovative therapies must travel interstate or overseas. This can cost more than $100,000 and involve strenuous travel for vulnerable patients and weeks away from family and friends. Patients with the means to do so can drain their entire superannuation to survive the cancer, but many other patients cannot afford this option.

The Snowdome Foundation was established in Victoria in 2010 with a mission to accelerate new treatments to Australian blood cancer patients to help them live longer, better lives. Snowdome is now extending its focus to include WA, supporting Perth-born, internationally recognised blood cancer specialist, Dr Chan Cheah.

Dr Cheah is the leader of the lymphoma team at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital (SCGH) and will leverage his strong relationships with major cancer research centres in Melbourne (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre) and the United States (MD Anderson Cancer Center). Combined with the excellent facilities and support at SCGH, there is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to establish a Centre of Research Excellence for blood cancer research in WA, and make important clinical trials available to patients in Western Australia. The benefits for Western Australian blood cancer patients and clinicians will be substantial, as it will:

  • allow for clinical trials for breakthrough innovative therapies to be conducted in Western Australia, with Western Australian patients;
  • attract and retain the best doctors and blood cancer researchers to fight cancer and treat Western Australians; and
  • benefit humanity by accelerating research into a cure for all blood cancers.

There are no known health preventative factors, so medical research is critical to finding a cure for blood cancer. Blood cancer research learnings can also assist other cancer types.

Connecting our local resources with national and in­ternational cancer centres means that WA patients will have access to the best treatment available anywhere. The hope is that what is learnt from treating patients here, will advance a cure for blood cancers and help millions around the world.

Our vision is that every Western Australian with blood cancer may have access to the best care and treat­ments available. With your generous support and the hard work of leading WA doctors and philanthropists, we believe this is achievable.

If you have any questions, you can speak to Suzie Bratuskins at the Snowdome Foundation on 0447 201 093 or send her an e-mail at Or you can visit our FAQs page.


2018 Research Excellence Awards celebrate 3 of WA’s brightest researchers

Our Research Excellence Awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of Western Australia’s best and brightest cancer researchers. They also serve to reinforce the importance of cancer research as an aspirational career choice and provide encouragement for the next generation of leading cancer researchers.

Congratulations to our 2018 winners:

Cancer Council Western Australia Early Career Cancer Researcher of the Year
2018 Recipient: Dr Chan Cheah

An early career cancer researcher who has made significant advance in cancer research over the proceeding 18 months.

Dr Cheah is an early career clinician-scientist haematologist and an emerging international leader in lymphoma research. He is particularly known for his contribution to the early phase clinical trial design, and research on clinical applications of PET-CT in treating aggressive lymphoma.


Cancer Council Western Australia Cancer Researcher of the Year
2018 Recipient: Prof Anna Nowak

A cancer researcher who has made an outstanding contribution to cancer research over the previous 12-24 months.

Professor Nowak is a world-leading clinical researcher in mesothelioma. She combines detailed laboratory knowledge with outstanding clinical trials experience, collaborative spirit and multidisciplinary drive, to improve both cancer research and patient outcomes.

Professor Nowak was one of the first to demonstrate that cancer chemotherapy exerts positive immunological effects, which can be exploited by combining chemotherapy with immunotherapy. She has initiated and led multiple clinical trials, allowing WA mesothelioma patients access to cutting-edge experimental treatments.

Professor Nowak has a strong commitment to mentoring the next generation of cancer researchers and doctors and is dedicated to service and advocacy within the broader healthcare community.


Cancer Council Western Australia Cancer Research Career Achievement Award
2018 Recipient: Prof Robert Newton

Acknowledges a researcher who has made a considerable contribution to cancer research.

Professor Newton, together with his team at ECU’s Exercise Medicine Research Institute, has demonstrated that exercise can have a significant beneficial impact on reducing long-term health problems caused by cancer and its treatment.

Through collaboration with Cancer Council WA and GenesisCare, his team provided the first exercise clinic co-located with oncology suites worldwide. This research has driven major change in clinical practice with the findings incorporated into international clinical guidelines including those of the American Cancer Society.

Professor Newton is committed to mentoring young researchers; he currently serves on over 10 researcher advisory groups and is a reviewer for 39 scientific journals.

Research conducted by Professor Newton and his colleagues have informed our free Life Now exercise classes for cancer patients and carers.

Cancer Council WA Research Grants Program

We’re proud to be the largest independant funder of cancer research in the state, thanks to the generous donations of our supporters.

In 2018, we’re contributing $3.7 million to 68 WA cancer researchers and 33 projects.

Read more about the research we’re funding this year.

Find out how to support cancer research