When the PRC was established, it's members originated from the Pain and Palliation Research Group that was led by professor Stein Kaasa.
The Pain and Palliation Research Group at the Faculty of Medicine, NTNU, was established in 2001 and is a multidisciplinary research collaboration aiming at improving cancer care through basic-, clinical-, and translational research. The group today consists of 21 professors/ass.professors, seven post. docs/researchers, and over 30 PhD-, medical- and master students. The group has primarily focused on symptom management and the basic biological understanding of the most prevalent symptoms in patients with advanced cancer – pain, cachexia and depression. The Pain and Palliation Research Group has coordinated a number of large research initiatives, such as the EU-funded European Palliative Care Research Collaborative (EPCRC), the European Pharmacogenetic Opioid Study (EPOS), and the FUGE 2 funded "Translational Research in Lung Cancer and Palliative Care – from genomics to symptom control (TLCPC). The group is one of the few clinical groups in Norway that was evaluated to be of excellent quality at the Research Council evaluation in 2004, and is one of the prioritized groups at the Faculty of Medicine, NTNU. In 2009, professor Stein Kaasa was asked by the European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC) Board to establish a European Palliative Care Research Centre (PRC).