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Cancer Core Europe Summer School 2019 – Emerging talent in the field of cancer research

At the Summer School for Translational Cancer Research in Albufeira, Portugal, from 7 to 11 October, young physicians and scientists came together to discuss topical issues in cancer medicine and to receive further training. The aim of the annual event, organized by Cancer Core Europe (CCE), an alliance of leading European cancer centers, is to promote international dialog between talented young specialists at the interface between basic research and clinical practice. The CCE Summer School is organized in close collaboration with the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg, the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK).

The round about 90 participants and speakers were welcomed by Alexander Eggermont, Chairman of CCE. The Summer School was initiated in 2011 to meet the urgent need for young physicians and scientists in clinically oriented cancer research in Europe. “Everybody is focused around the same item, that is: How do we translate new findings into clinical benefit for patients, as quickly as possible?,” Alexander Eggermont addressed the audience with this central question and concluded –  “That is why CCE exists.”

The focus of the event was on lectures, case studies and further training on current issues in cancer medicine and research, including in the areas of personalized immunotherapy, molecular tumor boards, drug development and cancer prevention. New fields of research, such as the influence of gut flora on treatment response, were also presented. The wide diversity of research disciplines represented at the event also gave the participants new insights into relevant topics outside of their own sphere of research. The last day was devoted to topics that included patient communication, patient participation and research policy.

One of the features of the CCE Summer School concept that makes it so successful is the support and involvement of renowned experts and the opportunities for intensive discussions with them during the five-day event. “Education and collaboration across disciplines in Europe and beyond are really essential in the fight against cancer,” says Stefan Fröhling, interim Managing Director of the NCT Heidelberg and Chairman of the Scientific Committee of the CCE Summer School. “We are delighted that the Summer School in Translational Cancer Research is attended by more than 80 clinical as well as laboratory based scientists representing more than 20 different countries”.

In addition, workshops and group work sessions, walks along the beach, an accompanying program of sporting events and excursions made the event highly interactive and provided ample time for networking in a relaxed atmosphere. “This Summer School brings people together, it creates opportunity, it gives us an important stimulus, and really fosters collaboration between young researchers,” was the enthusiastic summary from Andreas Mock, a resident physician at NCT Heidelberg and a DKTK School of Oncology Fellow.

Alex Martínez-Sabadell (Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology, Barcelona) was delighted with the positive feedback when he won the poster prize, which was sponsored by the Journal Molecular Oncology and FEBS (Federation of European Biochemical Societies). The prizes for the best scientific presentations by participants went to Zunamys Carrero (NCT Dresden and DKFZ) (1st place), Iñaki Merino (Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology, Barcelona) (2nd place) and Salvatore Provenzano (Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan) (3rd place). 

Further information about the Summer School for Translational Cancer Research and on how to take part can be found here. Information about the 2020 Summer School will follow shortly.

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