World Congress on Cancers of the Skin 2018
17 August 2018
The World Congress on Cancers of the Skin 2018 has featured many minds from MIA sharing their expertise and wealth of knowledge with over 1000 attendees from around the world. Coming together at the ICC in Sydney, it has been an insightful and educational Congress relating to skin cancer and melanoma.
A key feature evident throughout all presentations was the changing landscape relating to melanoma, and how far diagnosis, treatment and education have come. The exponential shift in melanoma survival rates over the last decade is reflective of the global melanoma research effort, however there remains much work still to be done.
Associate Professor Matt Carlino chaired the morning session, Local and Systemic Management of Advanced Melanoma, which included presentations on radiotherapy from Professor Angela Hong, and surgery from Associate Professor Robyn Saw and Professor John Thompson AO. Professor Thompson identified that while surgery has a changing place in melanoma treatment, it still cures 85% of Stage I & II disease. Surgery is not considered the preferred option for advanced melanoma patients, with immunotherapy and targeted therapy proving to be more effective.
Associate Professor Matt Carlino explained the issues surrounding targeted therapy and immunotherapy, and highlighted toxicity as one of the primary concerns of the treatments. The Congress was told, however, that these treatments are changing people’s lives and represent a huge step forward in increasing survival rates in advanced patients.
A key focus of the Congress was a session on Primary Prevention of Skin Cancer, where Dr Annika Smith and Associate Professor Anne Cust argued the importance of sunscreen and dispelled sunscreen myths citing accurate studies such as the ‘Primary Melanoma Project’, ‘The Vancouver Trial’, ‘The Nambour Trial’, as well randomised control trials. A key point emphasised was that use of sunscreen does not cause Vitamin D deficiencies. Delegates were advised that people should not deliberately expose themselves to the sun as incidental exposure is sufficient for Vitamin D levels. Sunscreen quantity and application were also highlighted as crucial.
Clinical Professor of Dermatology Darrell Rigel travelled from New York University Langone Medical Center to discuss US studies relating to sunscreen and melanoma prevention.
“The problem surrounding sunscreen application is simply that people aren’t using enough,” he said. Professor Rigel suggests that lack of cosmetic appeal is a major reason why people are avoiding sunscreen. “The best public health message is use a combination of protection; sunscreen and shade,” he said.
The afternoon session of Management of High Risk Early Stage Melanoma was chaired by Dr Alex Menzies and featured an entire MIA cohort with presentations from Professor Richard Scolyer, Professor Andrew Spillane, Dr Alexander Menzies and Professor Georgina Long.
Topics covered included staging guidelines, sentinel node biopsy, and adjuvant and neoadjuvant therapies. Professor Long emphasised the exciting time in the neoadjuvant therapy space with evidence suggesting drug therapy works better when a patient has an active tumour, rather than after the tumour has been surgically removed.
The WCCS has been an overwhelming success, with many brilliant minds banding together with the overall goal of better understanding skin cancer and melanoma, and ultimately better patient outcomes.
If you're a health professional and interested in taking your melanoma knowledge to the next level, check out our Melanoma Education Portal here.
Join in the fun of the virtual event, and together we can run over melanoma!
Melanoma Institute Australia features prominently in the latest ‘Expertise in Melanoma’ world rankings, released by Expertscape.
Participate in our online survey and help us understand the support needs of melanoma patients and carers.
Clinicians and their patients now have access to three online risk calculators developed by researchers at Melanoma Institute Australia.
MIA's Co-Medical Director Professor Richard Scolyer has received The University of Sydney Alumni Award for International Achievement.
More than 120 MIA clinicians, researchers and staff came together online to share research highlights.
For the 2nd consecutive year, MIA's Co-Medical Director Professor Richard Scolyer has been selected in the top 100 best, brightest, and most powerful advocates of pathology by The Pathologist.
As of Monday 27th July all patients and carers/family members coming into The Poche Centre will be required to bring their own mask.
In a recent issue of Cancer Cell journal, Prof Georgina Long AO and Prof Richard Scolyer discuss the challenge of bringing together clinical work and scientific research to underpin successful cancer research.
Clinicians around the world now have access to a new online calculator that predicts the risk that a patient’s primary melanoma has spread to nearby lymph nodes.
Professor Long has been appointed as an Officer (AO) of the Order of Australia (General Division) for distinguished service to medicine, particularly, to melanoma clinical and translational research, and to professional medical societies.
“I had a complete response within about six months. All of my tumours disappeared."
‘We are extremely proud of our ongoing contribution to the global effort to save lives from melanoma, with Dr Silva’s prestigious award proof that we continue to lead the way,'
MIA's Co-Medical Director, Professor Richard Scolyer, has achieved a Google Scholar h-index of 100.
We know what Melanoma March means to our community, so when we had to cancel our physical events, we created Melanoma March Virtual so that everyone across Australia could still connect to honour loved ones and support each other.
A must-read personal account by Garry Maddox in The Sydney Morning Herald of how immunotherapy is revolutionising melanoma treatment.
On Friday, a publication that lays out the steps needed to find out if a systematic screening program for melanoma would benefit all Australians was published in the Australia & New Zealand Journal of Public Health.
Melanoma March events have been cancelled. A Virtual March will be held on Sunday 29th March. Read this statement from MIA CEO Matthew Browne.
Thank you to the thousands of Aussies who bought ‘Game On Mole‘ t-shirts, took selfies, shared t-shirt pics on social media and started lifesaving conversations around sun safety and skin health.