Winner of the Wildfire Highly Cited Publication

Join us in celebrating Professor Georgina Long, winner of the 2021 NSW Premier's Award for Wildfire Highly Cited Publication.

Winner of the Wildfire Highly Cited Publication

The Wildfire Highly Cited Publication Award is presented to an individual or research team for a highly cited publication that has a significant impact on the cancer field.

This year, the publication is: Combination nivolumab and ipilimumab or nivolumab alone in melanoma brain metastases: a multicentre randomised phase 2 study (Lancet Oncol. 2018 May;19(5):672-681).

The report was authored by Professor Georgina Long AO together with a prestigious Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA) team including Professor Richard Scolyer, Associate Professor Alexander Menzies, Maria Gonzalez and Jarem Edwards.

Originally published in 2018, it has now been cited an incredible 427 times around the world – showing its vital role in improving outcomes for people with advanced melanomas.

“This trial single-handedly changed practice overnight,” Professor Long explains.


The MIA team’s research aimed to establish the efficacy and safety of nivolumab alone or in combination with ipilimumab in patients with metastatic melanoma that had spread to the brain (active melanoma brain metastases).

“Our ABC trial (Anti-PD1 Brain Collaboration) was conducted across Australia, and it showed that combination immunotherapy significantly improved the long-term durable control of melanoma in patients with brain metastases,” Professor Long says.

“It is the only randomised trial demonstrating that combination was so effective, and has much higher response and survival than single agent anti-PD1 immunotherapy.”


This is a significant conclusion, as this treatment may lead to better outcomes for people with advanced melanoma, as well as other cancers.

Professor Long leads an extensive clinical trials team and laboratory at MIA, with a focus on targeted therapies and immuno-oncology in melanoma and is a previous recipient of the Cancer Institute NSW Outstanding Cancer Researcher Award.

“Our advances and successes in melanoma research are a true team effort,” Professor Long reflects. “This is only possible through the collaborative work of the many talented and dedicated researchers who are part of the MIA team in conjunction with our world class trials centre.”