The meeting really gives a young investigator an opportunity to network, perhaps with senior investigators or GI oncologists from other countries, to discuss potential collaboration and research opportunities.
—Lisa Kachnic, MD
A decade after its start in 2003 with a few hundred attendees, the Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium now boasts more than 3,000 participants from all over the world. The next implementation marks the meeting’s 10th anniversary.
The 3-day meeting—to be held January 24–26 in San Francisco—is designed for the exchange of the latest research and science in cancers of the pancreas, small bowel, and hepatobiliary tract; colon and rectum; and esophagus and stomach.
Lisa Kachnic, MD, Symposium Program Committee Chair and Chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Boston Medical Center, noted that the symposium has become a must-attend event for those in the specialty who want to stay on its cutting edge.
From Bench to Bedside
“This is really the opportunity every year where the new data from all of the research studies on prevention, detection, or treatment of GI cancers is disseminated,” Dr. Kachnic said. “It gives the opportunity for GI oncologists to learn the new data and apply it to their practice.”
The symposium—attended by residents, post-docs, fellows, and all levels of faculty and private practitioners—offers a vast array of lectures, including educational sessions and abstract presentations focused on GI cancers. In observance of the meeting’s decade in existence, daily special sessions titled “A Decade in Review” will also take a look back at the triumphs, challenges, and lessons learned from the past 10 years for each disease site.
Great for Networking
The symposium is the largest multidisciplinary GI-focused gathering in the United States, with sponsors including ASCO, the American Society of Radiation Oncology (ASTRO), the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), and the Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO). Despite its growth, the meeting has managed to remain intimate, said Dr. Kachnic.
“The GI Symposium is a smaller venue where fellows, residents, and junior attendees have the opportunity to interact with experts in GI oncology from around the world,” she said. “The meeting really gives a young investigator an opportunity to network, perhaps with senior investigators or GI oncologists from other countries, to discuss potential collaboration and research opportunities. We really don’t have these opportunities at the bigger meetings.”
Abstracts are currently being accepted for submission; the deadline is September, 25, 2012, at 11:59 PM EDT. Abstracts in the following disease sites will be accepted: esophagus and stomach; pancreas, small bowel, and hepatobiliary tract; and colon and rectum. Abstracts should address one of the following topics: prevention, screening, and diagnosis; multidisciplinary treatment; and translational research.
Also at the meeting, merit awards will be given to fellows who submit high-quality abstracts. Winners will receive a monetary award as well as complimentary registration for the 2013 GI Cancers Symposium and access to symposium housing reserved for ASCO.
For more information about the meeting or to register, visit www.gicasym.org. ■
© 2012. American Society of Clinical Oncology. All rights reserved.