IASLC SCLC Meeting Program, Faculty to Reflect the Field’s Pivotal, Recent Major Advances

The upcoming April workshop promises to benefit early-career researchers, as well as experienced investigators excited about new perspectives and unique opportunities.

By Charles M. Rudin, MD, PhD
Posted: March 1, 2019

2019 IASLC Small Cell Lung Cancer Meeting
April 3-5 • New York, New York
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

The 2019 IASLC Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC) Meeting will be held at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, New York, April 3 to 5, 2019. This international meeting will be dedicated to the memory of the recently deceased Dr. Adi Gazdar who, among his many areas of scientific impact, largely shaped the modern era of SCLC research (See In Memoriam.) This year’s conference— organized by program co-chairs Dr. Julie George (University of Cologne), Dr. Trudy Oliver (University of Utah), Dr. Taofeek Owonikoko (Emory University), and Dr. John T. Poirier (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center)—promises to build on the momentum of the prior two meetings, featuring exciting advances in both laboratory and clinical research on SCLC. The impetus for launching the biennial IASLC Small Cell Lung Cancer Workshop in 2015 was twofold: first, a recognition that new insights into the biology and vulnerabilities of this exceedingly lethal disease were emerging from both clinical and basic researchers; and second, a recognition that no international forum existed to promote interaction among this diverse community of investigators. The pace of discovery has continued to accelerate, which was reflected in a larger meeting in 2017. This year, with major advances in the capacity for animal modeling of disease, new insights into intratumoral heterogeneity, the emergence of novel therapeutic strategies, the clinical impact of immunotherapy, and many other advances, the conference co-chairs had a tough task trying to pack the highlights into the limited time available.

Structure and Program
The meeting will begin the evening of Wednesday, April 3, with an opening keynote lecture by Dr. Anton Berns of Netherlands Cancer Institute, whose laboratory was the first to generate a genetically engineered mouse model of SCLC. Sessions over the next day and a half will focus on: advances in SCLC pathology and biomarkers; new insights from genomic, transcriptomic, and metabolomic platforms; advances in understanding tumor initiation including cell of origin, analyses of tumor heterogeneity, and intratumoral cell-cell interactions; progress in genetically engineered mouse modeling of disease subtypes; and therapeutic advances in targeted agents, immune modulators, and other approaches. The invited faculty represent leaders in SCLC research from around the world. The meeting will conclude in the early afternoon of Friday, April 5.

The single track format of the meeting will allow all participants to learn from and interact with investigators approaching the disease from distinct and potentially complementary angles.

From its inception, the goals of this meeting have included a “state-of-the-state” update on recent progress in SCLC research, a forward-looking perspective on key unanswered questions in the field, and promotion of research collaboration among investigators. With these goals in mind, we have maintained the structure of the meeting as a single track, rather than having parallel sessions focused on basic and clinical research. This format allows all participants to learn from and interact with investigators approaching the disease from distinct and potentially complementary angles. We believe this is ideal for early-career investigators and trainees getting up to speed in the area, as well as for active researchers seeking new perspectives and opportunities.

For more information, or to register for the meeting, please visit iaslc.org/events and select the 2019 IASLC Small Cell Lung Cancer Meeting. We encourage abstract submissions for poster presentation by trainees. ✦

About the Author: Dr. Rudin is chief, Thoracic Oncology Service, co-director, Druckenmiller Center for Lung Cancer Research, and Sylvia Hassenfeld Chair in Lung Cancer Research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.