Parkville Cancer Clinical Trials Unit

The Parkville Cancer Clinical Trials Unit (PCCTU) is an integration of the Medical Oncology and Haematology Cancer Trials Units of Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, the Royal Melbourne Hospital, and the Royal Women's Hospital.


  • Is the largest cancer trials unit in Australia with over 60 research staff providing support for over 70 clinicians who currently undertake cancer trials.
  • Brings together the strengths of the clinical trial units at each institution,  increasing collaboration and efficiencies as well as the likelihood that an individual precinct patient will have the opportunity to consider a clinical trial.
  • Brings together an experienced team of nurses, study co-ordinators, data managers, scientists and other research professionals to support a sophisticated cancer clinical trial program. The trials program reflects the expertise of the investigators and the strengths of the basic and translational research work within the VCCC.
  • Has a strong focus on the highly specialised and complex trials work including early drug development.
  • Participates in important Australian studies undertaken by the national cooperative groups, as well as encouraging translational research (bench to bedside and bedside to bench).
  • Has access to sophisticated cancer imaging technologies, molecular pathology and other critical platform technologies.

Most commonly, clinical trials involve new cancer medicines but also may examine new approaches to surgery, radiation therapy, pain control or ways of imaging and staging tumours. Thus, the current trial portfolio is focussed on Medical Oncology and Haematology trials, but over time, the PCCTU aims to provide resources to other craft groups and groups undertaking clinical trials.

All PCCTU clinical trials are conducted according to Australian and International guidelines for medical research under the approval of a Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC).

For patients

Find out more about taking part in clinical research at Peter Mac.

For a free practical guide on 'Understanding Clinical Trials and Clinical Research', please visit the Cancer Council of Victoria website.

For researchers and sponsors

The PCCTU has an experienced team of nurses, data managers and other research professionals who support a sophisticated cancer clinical trial research program.

The PCCTU consists of 9 multidisciplinary clinical trials teams;

Early Drug Development

Team Leaders: Kate Khamly and Carmela Rooney

[email protected]


Team Leader: Lauren Keller

[email protected]


Team Leader: Thoboklie Mthethwa

[email protected]

Haematology Team A

Acute leukaemia, allogenic bone marrow transplant, myelodysplastic syndrome and non-malignant haematological cancers

[email protected]

Haematology Team B

Myeloma and aggressive lymphoma

[email protected]

Haematology Team C

Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia, chronic myeloid leukaemia, myelofibrosis and polysythaemia rubra vera

[email protected]


Team Leader: Carol Russell

[email protected]

Medical Oncology 1

Urology, head & neck and brain cancers

Team Leader: Courtney Thornely

[email protected]

Medical Oncology 2

Upper gastro-intestinal, colorectal, sarcoma and lung cancers

Team Leader: Helen Stevens

[email protected]

Related experts

PCCTU Director

Prof Mark Rosenthal - Medical Oncologist

PCCTU Manager

Ms Marian Lieschke

Head of PCCTU Early Drug Development Group

Dr Jayesh Desai

Medical Oncology Trial Leads

  • Breast: Dr Sherene Loi
  • Colorectal: Dr Peter Gibbs
  • Gynaecology: Assoc/Prof Linda Mileshkin
  • Haematology trial leads: Prof John Seymour & Prof Andrew Roberts
  • Head & Neck: Prof Danny Rischin
  • Lung: Dr Ben Solomon
  • Melanoma; Prof Grant McArthur
  • Neuro-oncology: Prof Mark Rosenthal
  • Sarcoma: Dr Jayesh Desai
  • Urology: Dr Ben Tran