Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group--DBCG: History, organization, and status of scientific achievements at 30-year anniversary

Acta Oncol. 2008;47(4):497-505. doi: 10.1080/02841860802068615.


DBCG (Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group) constitutes a multidisciplinary organization established in 1975 by the Danish Surgical Society. The purpose involves first and foremost a nation-wide standardization of breast cancer treatment based on novel therapeutic principles, collaboration between experts handling diagnostic work-up, surgery, radiotherapy, medical oncology, and basic research, and, further, complete registration of relevant clinical data in a national data base attached to DBCG. Data are processed by the Secretariat personnel composed of statisticians, data managers, and data secretaries making current analyses of outcome results feasible. DBCG is run by the Executive Committee consisting of expert members appointed by their respective society. From 1978 the DBCG project gained widely accession from participating units, and since then nearly all newly diagnosed breast cancer incident cases are reported and registered in the national data base. Today, the data base includes approximately 80 000 incidents of primary breast cancer. Annually, the Secretariat receives roughly 1.5 million parameters to be entered into the data base. Over time DBCG has generated seven treatment programmes including in situ lesions and primary invasive breast cancer. Probands are subdivided into risk groups based on a given risk pattern and allocated to various treatment programmes accordingly. The scientific initiatives are conducted in the form of register- and cohort analysis or randomized trials in national or international protocolized settings. Yearly, about 4 000 new incident cases of primary invasive breast cancer and about 200 in situ lesions enter the national programmes. Further, about 600 women with hereditary disposition of breast cancer are registered and evaluated on a risk scale. The main achievements resulted in a reduction of relative risk of death amounting up to 20% and increased 5-year overall survival ascending from 60% to roughly 80%. This article is partly based on a Danish paper to be published in the Centenary Jubilee book of the Danish Surgical Society, 2008.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Anniversaries and Special Events
  • Breast Neoplasms / history*
  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Denmark
  • Female
  • History, 20th Century
  • History, 21st Century
  • Humans
  • Medical Oncology / history*
  • Medical Oncology / organization & administration
  • Societies, Medical / history*
  • Societies, Medical / organization & administration