At a Glance
The St. Anna Children’s Cancer Research Institute (CCRI) conducts specialised research into the causes and improved treatment of cancer in children and adolescents.
The key of success in paediatric oncology
Until the late 1960s, “Your child has cancer” was like a death sentence, because the chance of cure was below 20% for most children and adolescents with cancer. By collaborating within the so-called “Therapy Optimising Studies” (TOS) performed by national and international networks of paediatric oncology centres, the cure rates of certain types of childhood cancer, considered incurable so far, were improved from 35% to 70% within a few years (illustration of 2-year and 5-year survival rates of children and adolescents with cancer: please click here).
In the early 1980s the potential of modern biomedical research for improvements in the situation of children and adolescents with cancer became apparent.
Fighting the battle with a Viennese research centre
In 1986, the Association “St. Anna Kinderkrebsforschung e.V.” which acts as the supporting organisation of the CCRI was founded on the initiative of affected parents whose children were treated at the St. Anna Children’s Hospital. In 1988, the CCRI became operational, after the “St. Anna Kinderkrebsforschung e.V.” had raised more than 2.3 million € in private donations for the conversion of the then empty roof in the historic building of the St. Anna Children’s Hospital into laboratories and offices.
In the following years, the CCRI continued to grow until today it is encompassing ten different working groups. Since 2009, it is located in a newly-constructed institutional building, staying connected to the St. Anna Children’s Hospital by a bridge.
History & Future
Read more about the founding of the Association "St. Anna Kinderkrebsforschung e.V." and about our future visions and challenges for the benefit of children and adolescents with cancer.
Research & Development
The CCRI has developed into the largest centre for research related to childhood cancer in Austria.
Our comprehensive approach bundles all fields of childhood cancer research within a permanent cycle: basic, translational and clinical research, the improvement of diagnostic and prognostic methods, and immunological therapies.
The Unit of Studies and Statistics for Integrated Research and Projects (S2IRP) provides an essential link to research by acting as clinical coordinating centre. It enables the preparation, coordination and quality-control of “therapy optimisation studies” (TOS). This allows verification of the results and implementation of innovative stratifying diagnostics to optimise risk-adapted treatments.
Based on questions formulated by clinicians and researchers, Labdia Labordiagnostik GmbH, the non-profit subsidiary of the Association "St. Anna Kinderkrebsforschung e.V.", develops and offers innovative diagnostic approaches for the main areas of haematology/oncology and infectiology.
The working group Clinical Cell Biology and FACS Core Unit, a further interface between research, diagnostics and therapy, is responsible for the GMP conform production of haematopoietic stem cells that are administered to people. In addition to its activities as a tissue bank, it produces cellular therapeutic agents.
The CCRI interacts closely with the St. Anna Children’s Hospital and other paediatric oncology clinics and research institutions in Austria, Europe and beyond.
Picture on the left: "Mit Hand und Fuß" (translated "With hand and foot)
Painted by Evelin Schmidt with the help of 6 children's hands and 78 children's feet, donated to the CCRI during the official opening ceremony of the new institute in January 2009.
Picture on the right: "Kinder aus aller Welt. Gesehen, beeindruckt und festgehalten" (translated "Children from all over the world". They were seen by the artist, impressed her and were captured by her in a series of water colour paintings. Artist: Mag.art. Hilde Krepcik-Zimmer; donated to the CCRI in 2009.