Rare cancer is defined as cancers with incidence of less than 6/100,000/year (Surveillance of Rare Cancers in Europe). There are several problems of clinical practice, which are due to the small number of cases. The standardization of treatments, promotion of research and development as well as clinical trials, development of fundamental clinical system, are considered important issues of rare cancers (Reference (PDF:357 KB) ). As rare cancers are defined according to their incidence, a number of malignancies are included in the category of rare cancers (Rare cancer is not rare). For example, the patients with a variety of rare cancers are treated in the National Cancer Center. Those include sarcomas, gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs), children cancer, malignant brain tumors, eye tumors, skin tumors, head-and-neck tumors, malignant pleural mesothelioma, primary unknown tumors, neuroendocrine tumors (Rare Cancer Center).
We aim to obtain novel innovative seeds to solve clinical problems of sarcomas by translational research (Why rare cancers are rare?). In the translational research where the clinical problems are addressed by the basic research, and the research outcome is expected to contribute to the clinical practice, the inter- and multi-disciplinary studies especially between the basic researchers and clinicians are essential. In the other words, we prioritize the rare cancers as research subjects, for which we can have collaborators with clinical specialists. Moreover, we will actively launch a project with pharmaceutical company when they have novel anti-cancer drugs for rare cancers. When the basic research of our own or the other researchers generates innovative seeds for certain types of rare cancers, those rare cancers will be our subjects.
The following three issues are our major research themes.