Professor Tony S.K. Mok, IASLC President
IASLC was built on friendship and will only grow by the support of friendship. Over the next few years we shall take our friendship to a new horizon. The strength of our current membership is broad representation of specialists with targeted interest in prevention, diagnosis, treatment and research in lung cancer. However, we actually have few members from community oncology practice who deliver direct care to a large portion of lung cancer patients. They look after multiple cancer types, thus will demand more precise and practical information.
We plan to develop a specific information package comprised of selective journal articles from JTO, expert opinion and educational webinars targeting the needs of community oncologists. Beyond this, we shall also extend our friendship to other health care providers including pharmacists and nurses, and more importantly, to our patients via the advocacy group. We shall also expand in our geography by focusing on the needs of developing countries such as China, India and Brazil. Their young researchers may benefit from a fellowship experience in United States or Europe, and IASLC is in a position to facilitate the interaction.
These projects will strengthen our association and further promote our objectives. However, these also need to be fueled by sponsorships from multiple parties including patrons and industry. The IASLC Foundation will be the vital entity for such development. Dr. Paul Bunn and the last Board of Directors have already laid the groundwork and we shall actualize the Foundation within this term.
The initiatives of extending our friendship to a broader horizon and building the Foundation for IASLC relies on the support of her members. Through our common objectives of promoting the best care for lung cancer patients, I look forward to working with you on all fronts. I realize the next two years will be a humbling experience for me, but with your support, I know that it will be an enjoyable one as well.
Tony S.K. Mok, BMSc MD FRCP(C) FHKCP FHKAM (Medicine)
Dr. Fred R. Hirsch, IASLC Chief Executive Officer
It is with humble feelings and with deep respect I am writing my first CEO corner for the IASLC Newsletter. Taking over as IASLC CEO and following my predecessors, Dr. Heine Hansen and Dr. Paul A. Bunn Jr., in this position is a huge responsibility and a challenge, but also a great opportunity to move this organization forward and to the “next level”. Having been an IASLC member since 1977 and having followed the organization very closely over so many years, I hope to be prepared for the task.
The task is even more difficult these days than before due to a more challenging financial/industrial environment, which of course makes it more difficult to achieve the goals and pursue a strategic plan. However, the challenge is to accommodate to the “new environment” with new initiatives and strategies. Lung cancer is still the most frequent cause of cancer deaths globally and a huge health care problem all over the world, and our striving for the goal to reduce the mortality of lung cancer and improve the care for the many desperate patients with this disease cannot be restricted by changes in the financial/industrial environments.
I am looking very much forward to working with the Board of the Directors towards the goals and the missions of IASLC. My goal as the CEO is to build upon the fundamentals developed and given by my predecessors. I will strive to ensure that achievements and progress in lung cancer will be educated sufficiently all over the world and that IASLC will facilitate implementation of the most optimal measures and care through global education. I hope we can do this through different strategies with short term goals and long term goals. We need to ensure the next generation investigators get opportunities through education and fellowship programs. As a previous IASLC Fellow, I know the value of these programs and how important they can be for the candidates’ further career and it is my hope that we can develop our fellowship programs in different ways. I am also looking forward to working with the Board of Directors to undertake measures of increasing our membership to include community based doctors and other care takers, as well as make the IASLC more multidisciplinary on a global basis.
In order to achieve our short term and long term goals, further investments in our infrastructure is needed both with regard to personnel and technology development. It is my hope that this can happen despite the financial challenges. Without any investments - no future! Together with the staff within the IASLC Headquarters we have started the process of building up an IT-strategy in order to meet the need for technology development and implementation of new educational activities, such as E-library, new webinars, etc. Distribution of scientific progress as presented at our many meetings globally and through our journal requires an up-to-date technology, which we are in the process of implementing. An overall strategy is needed to prioritize resources within the headquarters and in collaborations with external contractors.
We just finished a very successful World Conference in Sydney by all means- and a great thanks to the local organizing committee led by the Conference Presidents Michael Boyer and Kwun Fong - so we are all inspired to move forward and preparing for the next World Conference in Denver, Colorado in 2015.
I am looking forward to working with my staff, with the IASLC Board, and particularly the President and the Executive Committee to achieve our common goals.
Fred R. Hirsch, MD, PhD
AACR-IASLC Joint Conference - Advanced Registration Deadline is Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013
Applications for WCLC 2018 Regional Organizing Committee Due Dec. 1, 2013
The IASLC is taking applications for the Regional Organizing Committee for the 19th World Conference on Lung Cancer to be held in Toronto, Canada in Nov. 2018. A description can be found on the Policies Page and applications are here.
Fellowship and Young Investigator Applications Due Jan. 6, 2014
Applications are now requested for the 2014 - 2015 Fellowship and Young Investigator award cycle. Overall, there will be a minimum of three awards of $40,000, each for a duration of one year, with at least one recipient from each region (North America, Europe and Rest of the World) funded. View complete guidelines and application form. Announcement available in Chinese, Japanese and Spanish.
All IASLC Meeting Information
To see the full schedule of IASLC Meetings, visit our event page.
Update from the 15th World Conference on Lung Cancer by Kwun Fong, MBBS, FRACP, PhD and Michael Boyer, MD WCLC 2013 Conference Presidents
With the 2013 WCLC now behind us, there has been time to reflect a little on the meeting. The statistics relating to the delegates participating in the meeting are impressive to us. There were more than 5,300 delegates, including 235 invited speakers, and over 2,300 abstracts were submitted and presented. With a meeting that is so large and full of the highest quality scientific research and endeavours, it is difficult to choose highlights, but several sessions, including both invited presentations and submitted abstracts, really stood out. The opening plenary session, which featured former Australian Health Minister and Attorney General, the Honourable Nicola Roxon focused on the fight to introduce plain packaging for cigarettes in Australia. This approach was ultimately successful and represented another important step in tobacco control.
The presidential symposium featured the four most highly rated abstracts which covered the spectrum from screening through to the management of advanced NSCLC, and the treatment of mesothelioma. The issue of how best to deal with screen detected pulmonary nodules was addressed in a presentation by Nanda Horeweg from the Netherlands while Robert Rintoul discussed the results of a randomised trial of pleurectomy versus pleurodesis in patients with mesothelioma. The results of the RTOG 0617 randomized trial of 60 Gy compared with 74 Gy chemoradiation therapy with or without cetuximab were also presented, with the results indicating no benefit for the addition of cetuximab. Finally, the Lung Cancer Mutation Consortium presented their results indicating better survival for those patients with a specific driver mutation who received therapy targeting that mutation.
With so many sessions and so much information it was not possible to attend all sessions during the meeting. Fortunately the Virtual Meeting and the upcoming Best of WCLC series both provide ways to remain up to date with material presented at the meeting.
The WCLC has a long tradition of being a friendly meeting where social events are combined with science, and the meeting in Sydney was no exception. Over 1500 people attended the Gala Dinner and were treated to a journey around Australia guided by “Doc Dundee” and featuring performances by the Bangarra Dance Theatre and the String Diva group.
As we say thanks to all the many global delegates, supporters and sponsors of WCLC 2013, we also now look forward to the next WCLC in Denver, 2015, and hope to see all of you there.
Michael Boyer and Kwun Fong, WCLC 2013 Congress Presidents
Advocates and Advocacy Groups Play Important Role in WCLC 2013
Over the past few years, IASLC has worked to enhance partnerships with advocacy organizations and patient advocates, and the 2013 WCLC was the first to include a patient advocacy group on the Local Organizing Committee. Advocates from around the world participated in this year’s conference, some with the support of IASLC Advocacy Travel Awards. This year marks the second time that IASLC has offered Advocacy Travel Awards, which provide funds to support the attendance of five patient advocates at the WCLC.
Recipients of the 2013 IASLC Advocacy Travel Awards include Beth Ida Stern, Executive Director of the Lung Cancer Foundation of America; Melinda Kotzian, CEO of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation; Robert Vojakovic, President of the Asbestos Disease Society of Australia; Merel Mountain, President of the Clifton F. Mountain Foundation and Trinidad Donoso, a cancer survivor from Chile.
“I was thrilled to represent the Clifton F. Mountain Foundation at the 15th World Conference on Lung Cancer in Sydney, Australia and look forward to using the materials and information I gained there in a dynamic fashion to work collaboratively with the IASLC and to help the world of lung cancer patients everywhere - even those as yet undiagnosed,” Mountain says.
Lung Foundation Australia, as a member of the Local Organizing Committee, has been involved with the planning process for the 2013 WCLC since placing the bid back in 2008. “We are extremely proud to have supported the delivery of this premier gathering of international researchers and physicians in the field of lung cancer and thoracic oncology in beautiful Sydney, Australia,” says William Darbishire, Chief Executive Officer, Lung Foundation Australia.
“It gives me great pleasure to see the involvement of patients and advocates from around the world at this 15th WCLC,” says Glenda Colburn, chair of the IASLC Patient Advocates Committee and a director at Lung Foundation Australia. “The WCLC program included sessions that were relevant to patient advocates and provided access for them to hear the latest research and advances in treatments.”
We encourage all members to contact us with information about Advocates or Advocacy Organizations in your region. Please visit the following resources for more information: Advocacy Resources and Advocacy Partners.
Fellowship and Young Investigator Applications Due January 6, 2014
IASLC Launches 40th Anniversary Celebration in Sydney
WCLC 2013 delegates all received a copy of the Progress in Lung Cancer booklet. ALL IASLC Members who receive the print version of the JTO received a 40th Anniversary DVD which features experts telling the story of lung cancer over the past 40 years! All IASLC members and other interested individuals may also view the videos and timeline from each decade: Watch the 40th Anniversary videos online. Support for this project from Lilly Oncology and Company is gratefully acknowledged.
IASLC debuts the IASLC Atlas of ALK Testing in Lung Cancer
The ALK Atlas is designed to help pathologists, laboratory scientists, and practicing physicians better understand various methods of ALK testing and the interpretation of test results. The book was distributed to all WCLC 2013 delegates thanks to support from Pfizer. Android and Apple IOS Apps of the Atlas are scheduled for release in December, and copies of the app will be sold for a modest fee. More information will be posted on the IASLC Website when it becomes available.
The IASLC Multidisciplinary Approach to Thoracic Oncology is a comprehensive text with over 150 contributors. The text is being developed under the leadership of Harvey I. Pass, MD, Executive Editor and David Ball, MD, FRANZCR and Giorgio V. Scagliotti, MD, Editors. Attendees at the WCLC had an opportunity to see a pre-print of one chapter: Gender-Related Differences in Lung Cancer written by Silvia Novello, MD, PhD, Laura P. Stabile, PhD and Jill M. Siegfried, PhD. The book will be available in print and electronic versions at the ASCO meeting next May. Stay tuned for more announcements in the coming months.
Featured Committee - IASLC Career Development Committee
The IASLC Career Development Committee (CDC) was created last year to develop the next generation of professional practicing in the specialties tied to lung cancer. Our mission is focused on mentoring, career development, networking, and assessing IASLC educational programs for their ability to meet young members’ professional needs. The committee consists of both senior and junior faculty.
The committee hosted a seminar focused on developing new academic investigators the day before the beginning of the WCLC in Sydney last month that was attended by approximately 200 new and aspiring faculty. A direct outgrowth of the session is a new initiative to provide “mentorship at a distance”. From many of the comments in this highly interactive session it became clear that many new investigators have trouble finding mentorship at their parent institutions. This is an issue at institutions both in the developed and developing world. The committee discussed this problem at its first face to face meeting two days later and has begun an initiative to match volunteer senior investigators with new faculty at other institutions utilizing the internet.
The committee has also discussed additional sessions for the next WCLC in Denver to enhance the experience for trainees and junior faculty. For example, an additional session focusing on practical issues confronting new faculty in the development of clinical trials will be recommended. Such a session would discuss the issues of negotiating budgets with institutions and industry, data management, interactions between clinical trialists and laboratory based investigators etc. For more basic science oriented new faculty, a session dealing with the practicalities of establishing a laboratory, grant writing and interactions with clinically oriented investigators.
The committee welcomes suggestions anyone in the IASLC with an interest in developing the next generation of investigators in lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies. Please email Chair, Martin Edelman, at email@example.com with comments or suggestions. Visit the IASLC Committee Page to view Commitee Membership, or to self-nominate for the IASLC Career Development Committee.
Paul Bunn, Jr., MD Recognized as Distinguished Professor
The University of Colorado has announced two new Distinguished Professors, the most prestigious honor given to faculty across the CU system. The recognition goes annually to faculty members who demonstrate exemplary performance in research or creative work, a record of excellence in classroom teaching and supervision of individual learning, and outstanding service to the profession, the university and its affiliates. Read the full article
IASLC Members Recognized by CAP for Work on Lung Cancer Biomarker Guideline
Philip T. Cagle, MD, FCAP was the recipient of the 2013 CAP Pathologist of the Year award (CAP's Highest Honor) and recipient of the CAP Distinguished Patient Care Award.
Marc Ladanyi, MD was the recipient of the 2013 CAP Distinguished Patient Care award. Both doctors were recognized for their work as co-chairs of the CAP/IASLC/AMP Lung Cancer Biomarker Guideline. The recommendations mark a significant breakthrough in the diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer and were a joint project with the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer and the Association for Molecular Pathology. In addition,
Neal Lindeman, MD, also a co-chair, was recognized with the 2013 CAP Distinguished Patient Care Award.
IASLC Member, John Minna wins UALC Hope Now Award
Uniting Against Lung Cancer (UALC), one of the nation’s largest private funders of innovative lung cancer research, has named Dr. John Minna, MD of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas the recipient of the 2013 Caine Halter Hope Now Award.
The Hope Now Award, sponsored by the family of Caine Halter, is an annual award recognizing the efforts of research labs developing novel treatment options for lung cancer patients and survivors. Dr. Minna received a grant of $25,000 to be used to further his advances in lung cancer research.
Brian Williams and local news anchor Bill Ritter presented the award to Dr. Minna at the Joan’s Legacy: Uniting Against Lung Cancer 11th Annual Strolling Supper with Blues and News in New York City. The annual gala had a record breaking year, with over 700 attendees. For more information, please visit the Uniting Against Lung Cancer Website.
IASLC 2014 Online Member Registration is Open - 3-year Membership Now Available
All Members will begin receiving their member renewal notices online in late-November and early-December. Please note that IASLC dues for Regular Members from developed countries have increased to $250.00, while dues for Developing Country and Allied Health Professional Members remain $50.00.
There are new options for each member category and Regular Members from developed countries may "lock-in" the previous member rates, and save $150.00 over three years by selecting the 3-year Membership option ($600.00).
We encourage all members to renew early so we can ensure you have no interruption of benefits or JTO delivery and online access. Please review the single-year and multi-year options available to you!
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WCLC Virtual Library
February 21 - 24 2018Santa Monica, California
March 1 - 2 2018Rockville, Maryland
April 11 - 14 2018Geneva, Switzerland