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On the hunt for clinical trial options but don’t know where to start?

A Guided Tour Through Clinical Trials

This course will help you gain basic literacy about clinical trials, understand how clinical trials can fit into your treatment plan and align with your personal goals, and help you build proficiency in finding clinical trials to meet your needs. At the end of the course, you will be familiar with what the next steps are after finding potential trials. Open only to COLONTOWN members. Please note that this course is not available to take yet.

A Place to Help You Navigate Clinical Trials

This workshop was created with stage IV MSS patients in mind, so much of the content will be focused for this audience. This course is also intended for patients who do not need a trial urgently — the goal is to gain a list of potential trials that you can turn to if or when you need them.

This is a self-paced course for patients and caregivers. We have a live version of this workshop that happens roughly twice a year. If you are interested in attending this workshop, join the COLONTOWN community to learn more.

Course overview

Learning Center Content

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CRC Updates with Dr. Manju George

CRC Updates with Dr. Manju George

Dr. Manju George
Welcome to CRC Updates, hosted by PALTOWN’s Scientific Director, Dr. Manju George. Manju is a rectal cancer survivor, who originally trained as a veterinary surgeon, but went on to do biomedical research in the areas of virology, cancer biology and cell biology. She has extensive experience working with genetically engineered mouse models. 
Since her diagnosis, Manju has been very interested in following developments in oncology, specifically colorectal cancer, and bringing this information to patients & caregivers. She does this by attending various oncology meetings, and keeping track of information on Twitter and everywhere else where experts on colorectal cancer meet, exchange information and share opinions. She is part of many collaborative projects, expert panels, and research meetings in the colorectal cancer space.
On this blog, Manju brings her unique experience as a patient-scientist to COLONTOWN University for you. Follow along with her TweetChats on CRC clinical trials (@CRCTrialsChat) or her personal Twitter account (@manjuggm), to stay in the loop on research advances and hot topics discussed on Twitter, at conferences, and everywhere CRC clinicians and researchers gather. 

TweetChat with Dr. George

Looking for answers to your burning questions about clinical trials for colorectal cancer? Join medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons and other CRC experts live during our CRCTrialsChat on Twitter — and here on Dr. George’s blog for TweetChat recaps.

In the first session in April, we will cover the basics about clinical trials. In the second session in May, we will learn about two trialfinders, and have experts from each walk us through on how to use them to find trials. 

Check out the TweetChat Twitter page here: @CRCTrialsChat

CRC 101

CRC 101

Newly Diagnosed? Feeling Lost? We’ve Got You Covered!

A Crash Course in Colorectal Cancer

CRC101 is your first stop for learning about a diagnosis of colorectal cancer. From understanding the jargon to tips for navigating your first few weeks, you will find everything here that the thousands of patients and caregivers in COLONTOWN think you should know right from the beginning.

This Learning Center has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN, our private Facebook community.

We would like to thank the CRC 101 Learning Center Sponsors: 

BMS logo
Thermo Fisher

What Will You Find Here?

A Place to Help You Navigate Colorectal Cancer

Hi there, welcome to CRC 101! So you have colorectal cancer (CRC) or care for someone with colorectal cancer. You might feel scared and isolated, and have tons of questions — but you don’t know who or what to ask.

CRC 101 is an attempt to have most of the information you need in one place — information that can help you navigate your cancer journey and help make the learning process a little easier.

If you’re unsure about what a term means, check out the glossary.

Start at the Beginning - and Get Connected!

If you’ve just been diagnosed, we have a First Week Survival Guide to help you through it — along with print-outs so you can easily keep track of everything. 

It’s important to note that most of the information we’ll be discussing is US-focused. We have wonderful international COLONTOWN community groups where you can ask questions about treatment options in your country. Join the COLONTOWN Community!

Learning Center Content

Welcome to CRC 101!
The Basics
Biomarker Testing And Me
All About Scans And Imaging
Chemotherapy And Targeted Therapies
Diet & Lifestyle
Need Help Navigating?
Print Me Out!
Questions? Feedback?

Featured Clinical Trials

Featured Clinical Trials

A short list of currently recruiting CRC trials

Putting the Patient First

This Center offers you complete and clear information about a small number of currently recruiting colorectal cancer clinical trials. The information about specific trials is presented to provide more usable, patient-friendly information than is often available about trials. We hope by building this information out to bring value to patients and encourage trial sponsors to make their information as accessible as possible.

This Learning Center has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN. We invite all CRC patients and caregivers to join one of our 9 clinical trials groups to connect with others considering trials.

What Will You Find Here?

Specific Details About Some Current CRC Trials...

We are working with trial sponsors to provide comprehensive, understandable information about their CRC clinical trials – who is eligible, what it would mean for you to participate, and how to contact an enrolling location. We will be adding more trials to this list over time!

But Be Sure You Start with Our "Basics" Center

Before you dive in here, spend some time in our Clinical Trials Basics Center, where you will find tools

  • to understand the clinical trials landscape
  • to better search the main databases of trials
  • and to put together some of the information about your disease and questions to ask that you will need when considering trial options 

Clinical Trials Basics

Clinical Trials Basics

Get your “planes on the runway” by finding options!

Get Up to Speed On Trials

The clinical trials ecosystem can be hard to understand, and hard to navigate. In this Learning Center,  we’ll help you understand how trials work, how to find clinical trials, and how to understand whether a trial might fit into your treatment plan. 

This resource has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN.

We would like to thank the Clinical Trials Basics Learning Center Inaugural Sponsor:


What Will You Find Here?

How to Find Clinical Trials That Might Be Options

We call this “getting your planes on the runway” – identifying clinical trials that might work for you, before you need them, or when you need them. There are a lot of tools out there, and we will show you how to use them. 

Resources to Help You Make Decisions About Trials

As a CRC patient or caregiver, YOU are the leader of your research team. Your medical team can help, but they will not necessarily know about all clinical trials that you might want to consider. The tools and information you will find in this Learning Center will help you become better able to identify options and discuss them with your care team.

Diagnostic and Surveillance Testing

Diagnostic and Surveillance Testing

The Whys, Whats, and Hows of Biomarker Testing for Colorectal Cancer

Inside Knowledge About Your Cancer

The Testing Learning Center provides up to date information about liquid biopsies, tumor sequencing, and all the new ways to get information about your cancer. We’ve got not only the science, but also the logistics, covered; how to get a test, and how to get it reimbursed.

This resource has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN.

We would like to thank the Testing Learning Center Inaugural Sponsor:


What Will You Find Here?

Educational resources about biomarkers and biomarker testing for CRC

We’ve collected some of the best resources we can find to help you understand CRC biomarkers and testing. 

Our team of experienced CRC patients and caregivers have also developed unique resources from the patient perspective, like our Cheat Sheet on which tests are useful to patients at different stages of CRC and different points in treatment.

Dedicated modules about some of the most current liquid and tissue testing options

For each featured testing option, we have worked with the test provider to describe:

  • When the test can be used – what stage, treatment status, etc.
  •  A clear explanation of what you will learn and how to use the data with your care team
  • How you can access the test, and get it paid for

We continue to add new sections over time, so be sure to check back often!

Learning Center Content

Biomarkers and Genomic Testing
Tools You Can Use
Liquid Biopsy/ctDNA Testing: Signatera
Liquid Biopsy/ctDNA (for MRD) Testing: Guardant Reveal
Liquid Biopsy/ctDNA Testing: Guardant360®
Tissue Testing: Immunoscore®
Questions? Feedback?

The Lecture Hall

The Lecture Hall

                               CRC Education from the Experts

Where the Docs and Other Experts You!

Get up to speed on everything from immunotherapy to treatment advances for BRAF with video presentations from leading clinicians and researchers. PALTOWN Scientific Director Manju George curates this series for patients and caregivers.

This Learning Center has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN.


What Will You Find Here?

Video-Based Colorectal Cancer Education

You may find some of these videos in our other Learning Centers if the topic is relevant, but the Lecture Hall is your one-stop shop for ALL the great videos we have been creating and collecting from our partners.

Disclaimer: These conversations are not intended to be medical advice. Your care team knows your case the best. Please consult with your care team about your own specific situation. The discussions that are part of DocTalks are intended for general treatment-related information purposes only. The opinions expressed in these videos are from the presenting clinicians and do not represent recommendations from PALTOWN.

What Kinds of Videos Are Featured?
  • Doc Talks: Our COLONTOWN online community hosts regular video discussions with docs on topics ranging from immunotherapy to treating liver metastases. 
  • Patient Presentations: Tap into our amazing network of educated, empowered patients and caregivers. Learn from your peers about what it’s like to get a liver transplant, or how to navigate the clinical trials system.

  • Med School: We’ve partnered with Total Health Conferencing to bring you some of the best “doc-to-doc” resources. Catch up on the latest news from major cancer conferences and listen in as experts discuss new treatment options.

Learning Center Content

Let's Learn About CRC
CtDNA Testing For CRC
Clinical Trials
BRAF Talks
RAS Talks
HER2/ERBB2 Talks
All Things Liver
Peritoneal Metastases
The Conference Center: Research Roundups
Rectal Cancer
Anal Cancer
Practical Considerations
Questions? Feedback?

Precision Medicine

Precision Medicine Learning Center

Precision, personalized, targeted – sound like the future? For some CRC patients, it’s already here.

Welcome to the Future

The field of precision medicine – using new tools to understand the specifics of a patient’s tumor, and tailoring treatment based on that information – is quickly changing the landscape for CRC patients. Learn from the experts about what precision medicine is, and how it can contribute to your treatment options.

This Learning Center has been developed by the patients and caregivers of COLONTOWN.

We would like to thank the Precision Medicine Learning Center Inaugural Sponsor:

What Will You Find Here?

An Introduction to Precision Medicine

 We’ve asked some experts – including a very experienced CRC patient – to explain what precision medicine is, and how it is currently being used in colorectal cancer.

Dedicated Sections for Precision Medicine Services

This Learning Center will provide an in-depth look at some of the services now available to patients and their care teams. 

  • At launch (October 2021), we have detailed information from xCures on their xInform platform. xCures has worked with the COLONTOWN University team to provide the first of our dedicated sections as part of their sponsorship of this Center. We look “under the hood” at how xInform takes a patient’s medical records and delivers a ranked set of treatment options to consider. 
  • We also provide a snapshot of several additional precision medicine tools, to give you an idea of what this fast-changing landscape looks like. In the next few months, we hope to add dedicated sections for each of these to help you evaluate each service.