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Biography

Catherine Alix-Panabières

Catherine Alix-Panabières

Dr Catherine Alix-Panabières received her PhD degree in 1998 at the Institute of Virology, University Louis Pasteur, in Strasbourg in France. In 1999, she moved to Montpellier where she did a postdoctoral research in the Department of Immuno-Virology of the University Medical Centre of Montpellier, France. During this last decade, Dr Alix-Panabières has focused on optimizing new techniques of enrichment and detection of viable disseminating tumor cells in patients with solid tumors. She is the expert for the EPISPOT technology that is used to detect viable tumor cells in the peripheral blood and the bone marrow of patients with breast, prostate, colon, head & neck cancer and melanoma. In 2010, she achieved getting a permanent position at the Hospital and at the Faculty of Medicine of Montpellier (MCU-PH), a wonderful mixture of giving teaching lessons to medical students on Cancer Biology in combination of developing this field of tumor cell dissemination at the hospital for the cancer patients, leading strongly translational clinical research. As an associate professor, she recently became the new director of the Laboratory of Rare Human Circulating Cells (LCCRH) in the Department of Cell & Tissue Biopathology of tumors. In this unique platform LCCRH, they isolate, detect and characterize circulating tumor cells using combinations of the EPISPOT assay, the CellSearch® system (Menarini), the flow cytometry, the CellCollector (GILUPI), the molecular biology (AmpliSpeed device), the Parsortix system and the DEPArray (Silicon Biosystem). She has authored or co-authored >60 scientific publications in this field during the last years including 10 book chapters and she is part of big European projects: CTC-SCAN (Transcan project), CANCER-ID (IMI project) and European Liquid Biospy Academy (ELBA, Marie Curie project). After she got the Scientific Prize given by the Region Languedoc-Roussillon in 2008, it was a great honor for her to receive the Gallet et Breton Cancer Prize, the highest honor conferred by the French Academy of Medicine in November 2012 and, very recently, the 2017 AACR Award for the most cited scientific article in 2015 (Cayrefourcq et al. Cancer Res).

Emmanuel S. Antonarakis

Emmanuel S. Antonarakis

Dr Antonarakis is an Associate Professor of Oncology and Urology at the Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the Director of Prostate Cancer Medical Oncology Research. He graduated from the University of Wales College of Medicine (United Kingdom) in 2003, and then completed a Residency in Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, followed by a Fellowship in Medical Oncology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Since 2010, he has been on the Johns Hopkins faculty as an attending physician and translational researcher. Dr Antonarakis’ clinical interest is the management of prostate cancer and other genitourinary malignancies (cancers of the bladder, kidney and testis). His research focuses on drug development and clinical trial design for patients with prostate cancer. More specifically, he is interested in developing novel androgen-directed therapies as well as immunotherapies for men with recurrent or advanced prostate cancer. He also has an interest in liquid biomarker development, specifically the clinical validation of the AR-V7 marker as well as DNA repair markers and their therapeutic implications. He is currently the PI of several phase II and III prostate cancer trials, and is an active member of the Prostate Cancer Clinical Trials Consortium (PCCTC) and the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) as well as the NCI Prostate Cancer Task Force and the NCCN Prostate Cancer Panel. He serves on the Editorial Board of several oncology journals, including the Journal of Clinical Oncology. He is the author of over 160 peer-reviewed articles, and several book chapters.

Carlos Caldas

Carlos Caldas

Carlos Caldas is Professor of Cancer Medicine, University of Cambridge, and Head, Breast Cancer Functional Genomics Laboratory, Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute. He is an Honorary Consultant Medical Oncologist and Breast Cancer Programme Director at the Cambridge Cancer Centre. He is Fellow of the Academy of the Medical Sciences, Fellow of the European Academy of Cancer Sciences, and EMBO Member. He received the 2016 ESMO Hamilton Fairley Award and holds an ERC Advanced Grant (2016-2021). He has published over 300 manuscripts, including in Nature, Cell, New England Journal of Medicine, Nature Genetics, Science Translational Medicine and Nature Communications. His research focus is the functional genomics of breast cancer and its biological and clinical implications. His laboratory redefined the molecular taxonomy of breast cancer, revealing novel subtypes and their respective drivers [Curtis et al, Nature 2012; Dawson et al, EMBO J 2013; Pereira et al, Nature Communications 2016], and robustly validated this new breast cancer molecular taxonomy [Ali et al, Genome Biology 2014]. His group also completed miRNA profiling of 1,300 of the same tumors and this uncovered a new role for miRNAs as modulators of the immune response in a subset of breast cancers [Dvinge et al, Nature 2013]. He also co-lead seminal studies that define the clonal heterogeneity of triple negative breast cancers [Shah et al, Nature 2012] and the patterns of whole-genome ER binding in primary tumors [Ross-Ines, Nature 2012]. His group led the studies that established ctDNA as a monitoring biomarker in breast cancer [Dawson et al, NEJM 2013] and as a liquid biopsy to unravel therapy resistance [Murtaza et al, Nature 2013; Murtaza el al, Nature Communications 2015]. More recently his laboratory has developed and pioneered the use of patient-derived tumor explants as a model system for breast cancer, in particular as a pre-clinical pharmacogenomics platform [Eirew et al, Nature 2015; Bruna et al, Cell 2016].

George Calin

George Calin

George Adrian Calin received both his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees at Carol Davila University of Medicine in Bucharest, Romania. After working cytogenetics as undergraduate student with Dr. Dragos Stefanescu in Bucharest, he completed a cancer genomics training in Dr. Massimo Negrini’s laboratory at University of Ferrara, Italy. In 2000 he became a postdoctoral fellow at Kimmel Cancer Center in Philadelphia, PA, and while working in Dr. Carlo Croce laboratory Dr. Calin was the first to discover the link between human cancers and microRNAs, a finding considered as a milestone in microRNA research history. He has now developed starting from July 2007 an independent research group at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston and produced a new advance by linking new classes of non-coding RNAs to cancer. He is presently a Professor in Experimental Therapeutics at MDACC and studies the roles of microRNAs and other non-coding RNAs in cancer initiation and progression and in immune disorders, as well as the mechanisms of cancer predisposition linked to non-codingRNAs. Furthermore, he explores the roles of body fluids miRNAs as potential hormones and biomarkers, as well as new RNA therapeutic options for cancer patients.

Lewis A. Chodosh

Lewis A. Chodosh

Dr. Chodosh is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Cancer Biology at the University of Pennsylvania, Associate Director for Basic Science at the Abramson Cancer Center, and co-Director of the 2-PREVENT Breast Cancer Translational Center of Excellence. Dr. Chodosh received his B.S. from Yale University in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, his M.D. from Harvard Medical School, and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under the mentorship of Dr. Phillip Sharp. Dr. Chodosh completed a residency in Internal Medicine and a clinical fellowship in Endocrinology at the Massachusetts General Hospital and went on to study breast cancer genetics as a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Philip Leder at Harvard Medical School. Research in the Chodosh laboratory is focused on understanding mechanisms of breast cancer initiation and progression, with a particular emphasis on tumor dormancy and recurrence. His laboratory has pioneered the generation and analysis of multiple genetically engineered mouse models of breast cancer that have been used to identify molecular pathways that underlie breast cancer dormancy, metastasis, and tumor recurrence and to validate these pathways in patient samples. More recently, through the 2-PREVENT Translational Center of Excellence, Dr. Chodosh is now focused on leveraging these basic discoveries to develop novel clinical trials for breast cancer patients with minimal residual disease. Dr. Chodosh has been elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, and the National Academy of Medicine, and he currently serves as Editor-in-Chief of Breast Cancer Research as well as a scientific advisor to the Harvard Nurses’ Health Studies I and II, and to the Dana Farber/Harvard Cancer Center.

Michael F. Clarke

Michael F. Clarke

Michael F. Clarke, MD is a Professor of Medicine and Stanford University. He is the Karel and Avice Beekhuis Professor in Cancer Biology and the Associate Director, Stanford Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. Dr. Clarke was the first to isolate and characterize cancer stem cells from solid cancers including breast cancer and has identified critical regulators of normal and cancer stem cell functions. These discoveries have implications for the treatment of both cancer and degenerative diseases. Recent findings have led to new treatment algorithms that will result in increased survival of patients with early stage colon cancer.

Luis Diaz

Luis Diaz

Dr. Luis Diaz is a leading authority in oncology who has pioneered several genomic diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for cancer. He is head of the Division of Solid Tumor Oncology at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center where he specializes in the treatment of advanced pancreatic and colorectal cancers. Prior to his role at MSKCC, he was a member of the Ludwig Center for Cancer Genetics and Therapeutics and directed the Swim Across America Lab at Johns Hopkins. He is also founder of several entities that focus on genomic analyses of cancers including Inostics, PapGene and Personal Genome Diagnostics (PGDx). Dr. Diaz has undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Michigan, and completed residency training at the Osler Medical Service at Johns Hopkins and medical oncology training at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins.

Dr. Diaz is involved in near-patient translational studies with the goal of bringing diagnostic and therapeutic studies to patients.

More recently, his work has involved the clinical development of tumor-derived DNA as a biomarker for cancer screening, early detection, monitoring and measurement of early residual disease. The basis of this work is based on the well-accepted premise that cancer is defined by a discrete set of genetic alterations. This approach combines a next-generation genomic sequencing with novel digital techniques to count tumor-derived DNA fragments in complex mixtures of DNA. The mutations found in cancers are never found in normal cell populations and detection of these mutations therefore confers exquisite specificity to the assay. Accordingly, he demonstrated that the level of mutations in the circulation, also known as circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA), tracked with fluctuations in tumor burden in patients undergoing resective surgery for colorectal cancer. Most striking is the ability of ctDNA to accurately predict recurrence after surgery and monitor patients with undetectable CEA levels. This novel biomarker is based on personalized genomics that in essence provides a ‘viral load’ equivalent for patients with solid tumors. The preliminary studies served as the basis for his most recent invention, the ‘molecular pap smear’, which is a promising approach for the early detection of ovarian and endometrial cancers.

He has also harnessed the power of cancer mutations as potent antigens and championed the use of checkpoint inhibitors in the treatment of patients with tumors with high mutational burden. His landmark proof-of this principle study used PD-1 blockade in patients with mismatch repair deficiency and showing dramatic and potentially curative responses in 90% of metastatic patients, which resulted in the first historic FDA approval of a cancer treatment for any solid tumor in adults and children with a specific genetic feature, which was noted as a 2017 Breakthrough of the year by the journal Science.

His achievements include successfully translating an approach that targets anaerobic regions of solid tumors with spore-forming anaerobic bacteria. Currently, Clostridium novyi-NT is in clinical trials in humans with treatment refractory solid tumors. This approach has resulted in several spin-off technologies including an approach to directly image this bacterium in vivo was developed using a radiolabeled nucleoside analog, FIAU using standard PET scans.

He is a member of the groups that received the 2013 AACR Team Science Award for Pancreatic Cancer Sequencing Team, the 2014 AACR Team Science Award for Malignant Brain Tumor Team and the 2017 AACR Team Science Award for Liquid Biopsies. He is also the leader of the 2017 SU2C Colon Cancer Dream Team. In addition, his work has been highlighted in several scientific and lay media outlets including the Diane Rehm Show, New York Times, NPR, CNN and the NBC nightly news.

Caroline Dive

Caroline Dive

Professor Caroline Dive is internationally renowned for advancing circulating biomarker research, with a strong focus on circulating tumour cells (CTCs), particularly in lung cancer. She initially trained as a pharmacist at the University of London. She then studied for her PhD in Cambridge before taking a new Blood lectureship at Aston University in Birmingham. Caroline then obtained a Lister Institute fellowship, and moved to the University of Manchester where she set a group to study drug induced apoptosis. She became a full professor in 2002 and moved to the CRUK Manchester Institute in 2003. Currently, Caroline leads the Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology group (~70 staff) at the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute, coordinating activities of scientists, bioinformaticians and clinicians. She has validated and implemented pharmacodynamic, prognostic and predictive biomarkers in clinical trials, working in tandem with clinical researchers and the Christie NHS Foundation Trust Cancer Treatment Centre. Her team has integrated reproducible protocols for the molecular profiling of CTCs into clinical trials, enhanced sample analysis for multi-site trials, and developed methods for circulating free DNA and CTC analysis from the same blood sample. She developed unique xenotransplantation models using CTCs enriched from small cell lung cancer patients’ blood samples, providing a fully tractable system for therapy testing and understanding drug resistance mechanisms, a landmark development in the field. Within CRUK-funded TRACERx consortium, a pioneering study of intratumoural heterogeneity and evolution of non-small cell lung cancer, she directs the CTC analysis within the consortium and is developing the first NSCLC CTC Biobank worldwide. She is the Manchester lead of the CRUK Lung Cancer Centre of Excellence, a partnership with University College London, and the scientific-lead of the Manchester Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre. Caroline has received recognition in terms of international prizes, most notably the CRUK Translational Research Prize in 2011, the Pasteur-Weizmann/Servier International Prize in 2012 for minimally invasive biomarkers to aid management of cancer patients and the BPS AstraZeneca Prize for Women in Pharmacology in 2016. She was made a Fellow of the European Academy of Cancer Sciences in 2011, Fellow of the British Pharmacological Society in 2012 and Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2015.

Z. Hugh Fan

Z. Hugh Fan

Dr. Z. Hugh Fan is the George N. Sandor Faculty Fellow and a Professor of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, J. Crayton Pruitt Family Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Department of Chemistry in the University of Florida (UF), USA. Dr. Fan’s research interests include microfluidics, BioMEMS, sensors, and cancer diagnosis and prognosis. He has authored >80 journal articles that have been cited for more than 5000 times, and edited a book entitled Circulating Tumor Cells: Isolation and Analysis (by Wiley). Dr. Fan’s research efforts have been recognized by Fraunhofer-Bessel Award from Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (Germany), E.T.S. Walton Award from Science Foundation Ireland, and Career Award from National Institute of Health (USA).  He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), an editor of Microsystems & Nanoengineering (Nature Publishing Group), and an editorial board member of Scientific Reports.

Françoise Farace

Françoise Farace

Françoise Farace is in charge of the Translational Laboratory of Rare Circulating Cells at CNRS UMS3655 - INSERM US23 AMMICA, and of the Circulating Tumor cells team at INSERM U981, Gustave Roussy. FF has obtained a PhD degree in Pharmacology at Paris University VI, and a HDR (Habilitation à Diriger des Recherches) at Paris University XI. FF has been in charge of several immunomonitoring programs in immunotherapy, gene and cellular therapy at Gustave Roussy. From 2002 to 2005, FF was President of the board and R &D Director of the Biotech company “C.I.L Technologies” (Free University of Brussels). For the past twelve years, FF focused her research on rare circulating cells such as circulating endothelial cells and circulating tumor cells with the goal of identifying both sensitivity and resistance biomarkers of anticancer therapies. FF has authored over 90 peer-reviewed publications.


La Région OCCITANIE
Congress date : May 3-5 2018

Organizing committee

Catherine Alix-Panabières
Klaus Pantel

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Programme

Important
Dates

  • 15th December 2017
    End of the early registration fees
  • 1st February 2018
    Abstract submission deadline
  • 22nd March 2018
    Notification of abstract acceptance & Travel awards
  • 15th April 2018
    End of the standard registration fees
  • 3rd May 2018
    Opening of the ISMRC 2018

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