Australasian Merkel Cell Carcinoma Interest Group (AMIGOs) is a network of specialists across Australia and New Zealand.
AMIGOs was established in 2017 in response to growing interest in the field, with the aim of bringing together clinicians and researchers from across different specialties to facilitate discussion around how to improve treatment and care of patients with Merkel Cell Carcinoma. AMIGOs is a Priority Research Special Interest group of Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials Ltd, Australian and New Zealand’s collaborative trials group specialising in investigator-initiated melanoma and skin cancer research. To find out more, visit masc.org.au.
The AMIGOs network includes Medical Oncology, Radiation Oncology, Surgical Oncology, Pathology, Genetics, Imaging and Laboratory-based research, who are all interested in enhancing care for patients with Merkel Cell Carcinoma.
The AMIGOs goals are to:
- Educate health care providers, patients and carers
- Engage primary care in order to optimise patient referral
- Empower patient advocacy
- Support basic, translational and clinical research on Merkel Cell Carcinoma
- Facilitate enrolment in and support completion of high quality trials
- Engage industry, government and other funders to support Merkel Cell Carcinoma patient care
Dr Wen Xu
BMedSci MBBS (Hon) FRACP
Dr Wen Xu is a consultant medical oncologist based at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane. He is a senior lecturer at the University of Queensland, and a clinical associate professor at Queensland University of Technology. He has also undertaken a melanoma and immuno-oncology fellowship at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, and a Phase I Drug Development fellowship at the Royal Marsden Hospital/Institute of Cancer Research in the UK.
Dr Xu has a particular interest in Merkel cell carcinoma and is the study chair of the I-MAT trial. He was elected Chair of AMIGOs in 2022 and also serves as the Chair of the Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials Medical Oncology Discipline-Specific Advisory.
AMIGOs Deputy Chair
Associate Professor Shahneen Sandhu
MBBS (Hons) FRACP
Associate Professor Shahneen Sandhu is a consultant medical oncologist and lead researcher in the Skin and Melanoma Unit at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Victoria. Her research efforts are focused on identifying biomarkers of response and resistance to improve and personalise treatments for patients with skin and prostate cancer.
She has a special interest in Merkel cell carcinoma and is the Study Chair on the GoTHAM trial which is investigating new treatment options for patients with advanced Merkel cell carcinoma. She is also the Study Chair of the metastatic melanoma CHARLI trial.