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Apply for funding

How we support research

Are you a researcher or a trial sponsor looking for funding?

The Anticancer Fund supports clinical research that meets our six Selection Criteria (below) and focuses on one of our High-priority cancer types:

  1. Paediatric solid tumours, including brain tumours and sarcomas
  2. Gynaecological cancers (excluding breast cancer)
  3. Adult brain tumours and brain metastases
  4. Hepatobiliary and pancreatic cancers

We accept co-funding and are open to applications from any country and any trial phase. Next to considering spontaneous applications, we regularly run Requests for Application with a specific scope.

Please note that companies (small biotech, spin-offs, start-ups,…) are not eligible for funding.

Selection Criteria for Funding

1. Patient-centred

The trial must serve patients’ interest.

  • Applicants need to demonstrate patient engagement in the design and execution of the trial.
  • A letter of support from a relevant patient advocacy group will be asked in the Full Application step.
  • Efficacy trials must include Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurements.

2. High scientific value

Applicants need to demonstrate that the scientific rationale is sound and whether contradictory data exist.

3. No commercial interest

As the mission of the Anticancer Fund is to support research projects with limited commercial value, we focus on interventions that are not of interest for the pharmaceutical industry. There are 2 possible situations:

  1. The commercial owner of the intervention (for drugs, this is the company that holds marketing authorisation) is not willing to provide full funding for the trial.
  2. The trial-intervention is off-patent or non-patentable, and therefore no company is interested in developing and commercialising the intervention in this trials’ specific indication.

In both cases, the lack of interest from companies must be documented by the applicant and, for on-patent products, confirmed by the company. For on-patent drug products, the product(s) should be donated by the company.

4. Improving survival or cure rate

The ultimate goal of the trial intervention must be to improve survival or cure rate, although not necessarily in the currently proposed trial.

5. Limited risk of trial execution failure

The leading clinical trial team must have a track record of high-quality trials – preferentially investigator-driven trials – in the field relevant to the application.

All interventions (study medication, devices, … ) must be readily available.

6. Low competition

When multiple trials are running in the same cancer type and setting, rapid changes in the treatment algorithm and fierce competition for accrual of patients may occur, which will impede recruitment in non-commercial trials. This will increase the risk of the trial becoming irrelevant. 

We want to limit the risk of facing these issues as much as we can. Therefore, proposed trials must meet following criteria:

  1.  Authorised and/or upcoming interventions in the specific cancer type and setting are limited.
  2.  Patient participation in the proposed trial is not impeded by other ongoing trials in the same cancer type and setting.

Ready to apply?

To assess whether your clinical trial proposal qualifies for an official submission, we need:

  1. A trial synopsis (max. 1 page)
  2. An estimation of the budget needed
  3. The amount and source of funding already secured for the trial,
    if any.

Please submit your application to

We will inform you whether your proposal is eligible for application shortly after having received the necessary information. If the proposed trial is deemed eligible for a spontaneous application, you will receive a submission form to complete.


Our Evaluation Process

Every application will be evaluated according to the same standard evaluation process.

Step 1 - Internal Evaluation

An internal evaluation is performed by the clinical research team of the Anticancer Fund. We will assess:

  • If the project is in line with the mission and vision of the Anticancer Fund.
  • If the 6 core criteria for selection are met.
  • The level of competition in terms of ongoing or planned trials and interventions in the proposed cancer type and setting (horizon scanning).
  • Whether the budget requested is reasonable, and whether any other obtained sources of funding are reported.

Step 2 - Full Application

If the proposed trial meets all aspects above, you will be requested to submit a Full Application form and the (draft) trial protocol. In addition, you will be asked to provide a detailed budget breakdown and complete a feasibility questionnaire.

This information will be evaluated by a grant review committee, consisting of external reviewers who are specialists in the cancer type concerned, patient representatives, biostatisticians and/or clinical trial methodologists.

Step 3 - Final Decision

The official and final decision will be made by our Managing Director, mainly based on two questions:

  1. Do we have sufficient funds to support the trial?
  2. Does the trial fit within our current strategy?

Rest assured, even if we decide not to fund your trial, you will receive valuable feedback that may increase your chances of receiving funding elsewhere. In addition, we can provide a list of other funding opportunities.

Clinical Trial Transparency

Important note: the Anticancer Fund strongly advocates for Clinical Trial Transparency.
Please have a look at our Clinical Trial Transparency Policy here.

Clinical Trial Transparency Policy