Professor Razelle Kurzrock, MD, PhD. University of California, San Diego, USA
Chief Medical Officer & Chair, Clinical Trials Committee Worldwide Innovative Network (WIN) for Personalized Cancer Therapy
Razelle Kurzrock has recently been appointed as Chief Medical Offer for the the WIN Consortium and was previously the Distinguished Professor of Medicine, Associate Director, Clinical Science, Director, Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy, Leader, Experimental Therapeutics, Director, Rare Tumor Clinic University of California, San Diego, Moores Cancer Center. Razelle Kurzrock is a world-renowned physician-scientist leader in precision medicine as well as in the development of novel therapeutics in the field of oncology. She is recognized for founding, developing and chairing one of the largest Phase 1 clinical trial departments globally while at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center; the central theme of the department was a personalized medicine strategy. She is also one of the pioneering trialists of the WINTHER precision medicine trial focusing, for the first time, on transcriptomics in addition to genomics. This trial was the signature study of the WIN international consortium (Nature Medicine). During her time at the University of California San Diego Health, Dr. Kurzrock’s charge was leading the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy as well as the Experimental Therapeutics program, and she also founded a Rare Tumor Clinic focused on precision medicine. The signature study of the center was the IPREDICT study (Nature Medicine, 2019) that gave, for the first time, individualized matched combination therapies to patients with lethal malignancies, hence resulting in improved outcomes. Dr. Kurzrock has over 850 publications on Pubmed, an H-index of 126, and has been named to the list of most cited scientists worldwide by Web of Science index, and to the list of the 25 most important voices in Precision Medicine globally. She has four children and three dogs and lives with her husband Dr Philip Cohen, in San Diego, California.
Professor Daniel Haber, MD, PhD Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Harvard University Boston, USA
Director of the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Cancer Center and the Kurt Isselbacher Professor of Oncology at Harvard Medical School (HMS).
Dr Haber received his MD/PhD from Stanford in 1983, completed an internal medicine residency at MGH, clinical oncology training at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI), and a postdoctoral research fellowship at MIT. He joined the faculty of HMS in 1991. Dr. Haber’s numerous awards include a MERIT Award from the National Cancer Institute, a Dream Team Award from the Prostate Cancer Foundation and a Dream Team Award from Stand-Up-To-Cancer, and the Richard and Linda Rosenthal Memorial Award from the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). He was appointed to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in 2008, and he was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 2009, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2011, and the National Academy of Sciences in 2018. Dr. Haber’s research has focused primarily in the field of cancer genetics, resulting in discoveries on the origin of the pediatric kidney cancer Wilms tumor, genetic predispositions to breast cancer, and mutations that define a subset of “non-smoker” lung cancers that are uniquely sensitive to targeted new therapies. In collaboration with MGH bioengineer Dr. Mehmet Toner, Dr. Haber’s laboratory has developed a novel technology for isolating rare circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from the blood of cancer patients—a tool that may have profound implications for early diagnosis of cancer and for non-invasive molecular profiling of cancers during therapy.
Professor Sarah-Jane Dawson, MBBS, PhD Peter McCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne Australia
Group Leader, Molecular Bimarkers & Translational Genomics Laboratory
Professor Sarah-Jane Dawson is a clinician-scientist. She obtained her medical degree from the University of Melbourne in 1998, and trained as a medical oncologist in Melbourne, Australia. She completed her PhD at the University of Cambridge, UK. Following postdoctoral studies at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, she returned to Melbourne in 2014 to head the Molecular Biomarkers and Translational Genomics Laboratory at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. She also holds a joint appointment with the Centre of Cancer Research at The University of Melbourne (since 2016) and currently holds a CSL Centenary Fellowship (2018-2022). She is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences and was recipient of the Jian Zhou Medal in recognition of translational medical science in 2020. Her current research interests are focused on the development of noninvasive blood-based biomarkers ('liquid biopsies') for clinical application, including early detection, risk stratification and disease monitoring in cancer management.
Professor Minetta Liu, MD Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, Minnesota, USA
Chair of Research for the Department of Oncology, Co-director of Genomics in Action for the Center for Individualized of Medicine.
Minetta C. Liu, is a breast medical oncologist and translational researcher at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, where she holds dual appointments in the Department of Oncology and the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology. Her primary research focus is on the efficient advancement of novel therapeutics and the development of reliable predictors of systemic treatment response. As such, she leads several research trials with both clinical and correlative laboratory endpoints. She holds the academic rank of Professor of Oncology from the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine. Dr. Liu is Chair of Research for the Department of Oncology, Co-director of Genomics in Action for the Center for Individualized of Medicine, a member of the Mayo Clinic Research Committee, Institutional Principal Investigator for the Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium, Associate Medical Director for the Department of Development, and Medical Director for the Office of Specialty Contracts and Collaborations. She serves on the Breast Committee for the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology, leads the Circulating Biomarker Working Group for the NIH Translational Research Program, and directs a laboratory focused on expanding the clinical applications and advancing the technologies related to liquid biopsies for solid tumors. She is dedicated to improving patient outcomes through access to novel therapeutic agents and molecular diagnostic tools.
Professor Maarten IJzerman, BSc, MSc, MAICD, PhD University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
VCCC professor and Head of Cancer Health Services Research in the University of Melbourne Centre for Cancer Research and the Centre for Health Policy of the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health. Professor of Health Technology Assessment in the University of Twente (Netherlands) and co-lead, molecular diagnostics in cancer management program.
Maarten’s international work is focussed around the health economics and health services implications of personalised medicine, including research on drug treatment sequencing and the use of complex genomic sequencing. He has been workpackage leader in the European CTC-Trap study, developing isolation methods for Circulating Tumor Cells, a member of the CANCER-ID scientific advisory panel and a member of the European Liquid Biopsy Academy (ELBA). He is a co-lead of the health economics work in the Canadian-Dutch UCAN-CANDU study, a co-investigator on the Dutch TANGO project investigating Whole-Genome Sequencing in cancer and a co-investigator for the Australian PRECEPT project, developing a prediction model to evaluate genomic biomarkers for risk-stratification in localised prostate cancer. He is the CIA on the MRFF funded “PRedicting health economic IMpact of new CAncer Treatments” (PRIMCAT) project. Maarten is co-chairing the VCCC data-driven cancer health services research hub, developing a program of work using linked data for value-based care. He currently sits on the Australian Medical Services Advisory Committee and is a member of numerous (inter-)national advisory boards related to health services research, clinical governance and cancer management and innovation.
Dr Ira Deveson, PhD Kinghorn Centre for Clinical Genomics, Sydney, Australia
Head of Genomic Technologies Group.
Dr Ira Deveson graduated with a Bachelor of Philosophy from the Australian National University in 2012. He completed a PhD at the Garvan Institute from 2014-2017, Dr Deveson's PhD was focused on genome/transcriptome research and bioinfomatics, and earned him recognition with the JD Catcheside prize from the Genomics Society of Australasia. He was awarded an Early Career Fellowship from the Cancer Institute NSW (2018) and a prestigious Investigator Grant (EL2) from the NHMRC and Medical Research Futures Fund (2020). After a post-doc stint under Dr Tim Mercer, Ira was appointed as Head of the Genomic Technologies Group within the Kinghorn Centre for Clinical Genomics in 2020. Under his leadership, the Genome Technologies Group is testing and developing cutting-edge molecular and computational tools for research and clinical genomics. His current focus is on the development and implementation of long-read sequencing technologies in a diverse set of research areas – ranging from clinical genome analysis to reptile sex determination. He has published numerous high-impact publications, including first-author papers in Nature Biotechnology, Nature Methods, Science Advances, Nature Communications and last-author papers in Nature Communications, Communications Biology and Nature Protocols.
Professor Nicola Aceto, PhD Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland
Group Leader, Molecular Oncology Laboratory.
Nicola Aceto is Associate Professor of Molecular Oncology and Group Leader of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Institute of Molecular Health Sciences, Department of Biology of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich since 2021. Previously, he has been Swiss National Science Foundation Assistant Professor of Oncology at the University of Basel. Recent discoveries of the Aceto lab include important insights into the metastatic process, namely investigations of the biology and vulnerabilities of circulating tumor cell clusters (Gkountela et al., Cell, 2019, cover of the journal; Szczerba et al., Nature, 2019; Donato et al., Cell Rep, 2020) some of which already translated in clinical trials for patients with metastatic breast cancer. Previously, Nicola worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the Haber lab at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center in Boston, MA, USA, where he identified circulating tumor cell clusters as metastatic precursors (Aceto et al., Cell, 2014; Sarioglu and Aceto et al., Nature Methods, 2015; Aceto et al., Trends in Cancer, 2015). He has also been an active member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Cambridge, MA, USA, and a visiting scientist in the Clevers lab at the Hubrecht institute, the Netherlands. Nicola received a PhD summa cum laude from the Friedrich Miescher Institute (FMI) in Basel, Switzerland with a thesis on protein tyrosine phosphatases and their role in breast cancer (Aceto et al., Nature Medicine, 2012; Sun, Aceto et al., Cell, 2011). Nicola received three ERC Grants (StG 2015, PoC 2018, CoG 2020) and several awards related to his work on circulating tumor cells, including a prestigious Friedrich Miescher Award for Outstanding Achievements in Biochemistry (2020). He is an inventor in 10 patent applications related to the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.
Dr Jenny Lee, MBBS, PhD Chris O'Brien Lifehouse, Sydney, Australia
Medical Oncologist (Skin, Melanoma, Head and Neck) and Clinical Lead, Precision Cancer Therapy laboratory, Macquarie University
Dr Jenny Lee is a medical oncologist at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and clinical lead within the precision cancer therapy laboratory at Macquarie University. She undertook a PhD in liquid biopsies in cancer and immunotherapy response and resistance, and has published widely in journals such as JAMA Oncology, Nature Communications and Lancet Oncology. Aligning with her clinical interest, she continues to be active in translational research within the discipline of skin (including melanoma), head and neck and thoracic oncology.
Invited National Speakers
Dr Lisa Briggs. Cancer survivor and patient advocate, Melbourne.
Assoc Prof Richard Tothill. Rare diseases Oncogenomics, Dept of Clinical Pathology, University of Melbourne
Assoc Prof Carlos Salomon Gallo. Exome Biology, UQCCR, University of Queensland
Dr Daniel Cox. Dept of Surgery, Austin Health & University of Melbourne
Dr Sridurga Mithraprabhu. Myeloma Research Group, ACBD, Alfred Hospital, Monash University
Dr Sina Abu. Center for Personalized Nanomedicine, AINB, University of Queensland
Assoc Prof Caroline Ford. Gynaecological Cancer Research Group, University of NSW
Dr Tarek Meniawy. St John of God Subiaco Hospital & Edith Cowan University
Assoc Prof Elizebeth Williams. Tumor Models, Faculty of Health, QUT & TRI
Prof Mary Bebawy. Cancer Cell Biology & Therapeutics, UTS
Dr Smadar Kahana-Edwin. Children's Cancer Research Unit, Children's Hospital at Westmead
Assoc Prof Muhammad Shiddiky. School of Environment & Science, Griffith University