The Australasian Melanoma Conference 2016

Keynotes and Speakers

Keynote Speakers:

Dr Vernon K. Sondak, MD

Dr Vernon Sondak

Dr Sondak is Chair of the Department of Cutaneous Oncology and Director of Surgical Education at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, Florida.  He is also a Professor in the Departments of Oncologic Sciences and Surgery at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine.  His research interests include surgical treatment of malignant melanoma in adults and children; surgical treatment of Merkel cell carcinoma, desmoid tumors and cutaneous soft-tissue sarcomas, including dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans; adjuvant and neoadjuvant therapy of melanoma; and evaluation of new therapies for patients with localized or disseminated melanoma.  Dr. Sondak has also been a leader in studies of surgical treatment of melanoma and other cutaneous malignancies, particularly in the application of sentinel lymph node biopsy to the staging of melanoma and Merkel cell carcinoma.  He is actively involved in ongoing analyses to determine which patients with thin melanoma are most likely to benefit from sentinel node biopsy, as well as which patients with sentinel node metastases are most likely to have further metastases identified in other regional lymph nodes. 
Dr Sondak is the author or coauthor of over 350 articles in peer-reviewed publications, over 200 abstracts, and 8 books and 68 book chapters.

Organisations:
Chair, Department of Cutaneous Oncology, Director of Surgical Education, Moffitt Cancer Center, and Professor of Surgery
University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida.

Associate Professor Jennifer Wargo, MD, MMSc

Associate Professor Jennifer Wargo

Dr. Wargo is a melanoma surgical oncologist and translational scientist from Harvard and MD Anderson Cancer Center with a research focus aimed at better understanding response and resistance to molecularly targeted therapy and immunotherapy. Her laboratory performs deep molecular and immune profiling on longitudinal biospecimens collected from patients with melanoma during treatment to gain insights into therapeutic response and resistance, with insights gained tested via “reverse translation” in murine models to better understand mechanisms and to optimize treatment strategies.

Organisation:
Associate Professor, Department of Surgical Oncology and Department of Genomic Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX

Professor Thomas Gajewski, MD, PhD

Professor Thomas Gajewski

Dr. Gajewski received his MD and his PhD in immunology from the University of Chicago with Dr. Frank Fitch, and undertook post-doctoral studies on anti-tumor immunity at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research in Belgium with Pr. Thierry Boon.  He completed a clinical fellowship in Hematology/Oncology at the University of Chicago before joining the faculty in 1997.  He is the Leader of the Immunology and Cancer Program and the Melanoma Oncology clinic, and directs the Human Immunologic Monitoring Core Facility.  His research interests focus on fundamental tumor immunology and application towards novel immunotherapies for melanoma and other cancers. 

Dr. Gajewski has published more than 200 manuscripts on aspects of T cell biology, anti-tumor immunity, and melanoma therapy.  He is a founding editor of the Journal for Immunotherapy of Cancer, is chair of the NIH study section on Cancer Immunopathology and Immunotherapy, has served on programming committees for ASCO and AACR, and is past President of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer.  Dr. Gajewski recently received the first American Cancer Society—Jules L. Plangere Jr. Family Foundation Professorship in Cancer Immunotherapy.

Organisation: 
Professor, Department of Pathology and Department of Medicine, Section of Hematology/Oncology, University of Chicago

 

 

Registrations have closed

Invited Speakers:

Alex Guminski

Alexander Guminski trained in medical oncology and completed a PhD in Sydney followed by psot-doctoral research in the UK. He currently works at Royal North Shore and Mater Hospitals and Melanoma Institute Australia. He has interests in advanced melanoma, non-melanoma skin cancer and head and neck cancers.

Alex Menzies

Dr Alex Menzies is a Medical Oncologist and Senior Research Fellow at Melanoma Institute Australia, Royal North Shore Hospital and The University of Sydney in Sydney, Australia. He completed specialist oncology training in 2011 and received his PhD from The University of Sydney in 2015 for research exploring the biology of BRAF-mutant melanoma and biomarkers of response and resistance to targeted therapy.  Since 2009 he has been an investigator on over 50 Phase I to III clinical trials of targeted therapies and immunotherapies in melanoma, including the Phase I trials of dabrafenib, combination dabrafenib and trametinib, pembrolizumab and combination ipilimumab and pembrolizumab. He has published several original research and review articles in melanoma, and is a regular invited speaker at national and international meetings. His main research interests are the biology of melanoma and biomarkers of response and resistance to systemic therapy.

Brindha Shivaligam

Dr Shivalingam is a Neurosurgeon at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and the Mater Hospital. She is a graduate of Sydney University and completed her Neurosurgical training in 2006. Her post fellowship training neuro oncology and skull base surgery was in Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge, UK.

The focus of her practice lies in Neuro oncology and skull base surgery. Dr Shivalingam has a special neuro oncology interest in Gliomas and in melanoma surgery and is affiliated with the Melanoma Institute Australia. Her skull base surgery involves close collaboration with ENT surgeons and focuses on acoustic neuroma surgery and anterior endoscopic surgery.

Caterina Longo

Caterina Longo is a board-certified Dermatologist specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of skin cancers.  Although providing the best care possible for patients remains her primary goal, she also committed to education and clinical research. She is actively involved in clinical research and she have published numerous papers on topics related to skin cancer with an emphasis on melanoma, atypical/dysplastic nevi, Spitz/Reed nevi and non-melanoma skin cancer. Her research interests are focused on the use of imaging instruments such as dermoscopy, and confocal laser microscopy to recognize skin cancer early in its development. She frequently lecture on these topics both nationally and internationally. She earned her Medical Degree from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy, in September 2002, and she is licensed to practice medicine in Italy. In 2006 she completed the School of Specialization in Dermatology and Venereology. She holds a doctoral degree in Clinical and Experimental Medicine in January 2010. Since 2002 she practices research mainly in the field of noninvasive diagnosis in dermato-oncology, paying particular attention to the study of melanoma and pigmented skin lesions, in the field of the early identification by means of non invasive methods, such as dermoscopy, high frequency ultrasounds and confocal microscopy for the in vivo and ex vivo study of cytological and architectural aspects of pigmented skin lesions, in correlation with histopathology. She is licensed for the position as “Associate Professor” in MED/35 (Dermatology and Venereology) (Abilitazione scientifica nazionale 2012).– Author of 224 peer-reviewed and indexed papers (h-index: Scopus 26, Scopus citations 2100)

Christian Blank

Christian Blank obtained his MD from the Medical School of the Technical University Munich, Germany, where he also completed his Doctoral thesis (summa cum laude) at the Department for Medical Microbiology in 1997. As a Junior House Officer (1997–1998) he held four positions at the Departments of Cardiology and of Radiology at the University Clinic Munich Rechts der Isar, Munich, the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Departments at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, and the University of Birmingham, UK. He went on to attain the position of Physician at the Department of Haematology and Oncology, University of Regensburg, Germany (1998–2001). During 2001–2003, Dr Blank held a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the lab of Professor Thomas Gajewski, University of Chicago, IL, USA. Subsequently he was appointed as Physician and Research Group Leader at the Department of Haematology and Oncology, University of Regensburg (2003–2007). Dr Blank has obtained two Specialist Degrees in Internal Medicine (2007) and in Haematology/Oncology (2009). Since 2007, he has been appointed Staff Member at the Department of Medical Oncology, and Group Leader at the Division of Immunology, NKI-AVL, Amsterdam. In 2010, Dr Blank became University Lecturer (Privatdozent) at the University of Regensburg. He obtained his Master of Business Administration (MBA), from the University of Warwick, UK (2006). Dr Blank is committed to teaching, lecturing on medical courses at the NKI-AVL and the Medical School of the University of Regensburg. He is a member of four prestigious societies, including ESMO and ASCO. He has been an invited speaker at more than 80 national and international congresses, and is the author of more than 60 publications. His research interests broadly include targeted and biological response modifiers, and prognostic markers in melanoma and RCC.

David Gyorki

David Gyorki is a general surgeon specialising in surgical oncology with clinical expertise in the management of patients with melanoma, breast cancer and soft tissue sarcoma. He currently has public hospital appointments at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and the Austin Hospital. David undertook general surgical training at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne as well as at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. After completing his training in Australia he pursued further specialist training in Surgical Oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre in New York, USA. 

During his surgical training, David spent two years completing a doctorate at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute for Medical Research studying the interaction of breast stem cells and the immune system. His research was awarded the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium Basic Science Scholarship. David is now investigating the role of the immune system in the management of melanoma and has secured a competitive research grant to study the immune environment in resected melanoma metastases.

David is a member of the NH&MRC melanoma guidelines working group. He is also a board member of the Australasian Sarcoma Study Group and committee member of the Surgical Oncology Section of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

David Whiteman

Professor David Whiteman is Deputy Director and Head of Cancer Control at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, Australia. Professor Whiteman has an international reputation for research into melanoma and skin cancer, particularly for his molecular epidemiological research delineating the causal pathways to melanoma and applying this knowledge to prevention. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, the Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine, and Honorary Fellow of the Skin Cancer College of Australasia. In 2006, he was awarded a Fulbright Senior Scholarship to visit cancer researchers in the United States.

Diona Damian

Diona Damian is Professor of Dermatology at the University of Sydney, Clinical Academic at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Associate of the Melanoma Institute Australia. Her research focuses on the role of skin immunity in the mechanisms, prevention and treatment of skin cancer. Current projects include skin cancer chemoprevention in transplant patients, effects of nicotinamide on skin cancer immune responses and topical immunotherapy for recurrent melanoma.

Elin Gray

Dr Elin Gray is a Cancer Research Trust Postdoctoral Fellow at the School of Medical and Health Sciences at Edith Cowan University, Perth, WA.

Dr Gray completed a BSc in Biochemistry at the University of Havana, Cuba, and obtained her PhD degree at University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She was a visiting Fogarty Fellow at the Vaccine Research Centre at the NIH, Maryland; and at Duke University, North Carolina, USA.

Elin moved to Edith Cowan University in 2011 to pursue a career in cancer research. Since, she has built a research program focused on the characterisation of blood markers such as; circulating tumour cells, circulating tumour DNA, exosomes and autoantibodies; for diagnosis and personalised treatment management of melanoma.

Elizabeth Paton

Elizabeth Paton (BSc BA MAICD) is the Executive Officer for the Australia and New Zealand Melanoma Trials Group (www.anzmtg.org). Libby is responsible for a team of staff, and oversees the ANZMTG research portfolio (https://www.anzmtg.org/content.aspx?page=trials). ANZMTG has grown from 25 to 1,100+ members with over 29 countries now represented. ANZMTG has developed and implemented 19 Phase II and III clinical trials with a growing portfolio of new studies in different disciplines. To date, more than 2,660 patients have enrolled in ANZMTG trials from 100+ institutions in 14 countries. Libby has successfully secured $AU7.5 million+ in research funding since commencing in the role. ANZMTG is affiliated with the University of Sydney and the Clinical Oncological Society of Australia and based at the Melanoma Institute Australia in Sydney.  Libby has worked in the development and conduct of phase I – IV oncology clinical trials in both Australia and Europe working with industry, commercial and non-commercial sponsors.

Georgina Long

Professor Georgina Long, BSc PhD MBBS FRACP, is Chair of Melanoma Medical Oncology and Translational Research at Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA) and Royal North Shore Hospital, The University of Sydney. She leads an extensive clinical trials team and laboratory at MIA, with a focus on targeted therapies and immuno-oncology in melanoma. She is principal investigator on phase I, II and III clinical trials in adjuvant and metastatic melanoma, including trials in patients with active brain metastases. She is the chief investigator on NHMRC funded research into the molecular biology of melanoma, with a particular interest in clinical and tissue biomarker correlates of systemic therapy sensitivity and resistance. In recognition of her ground breaking research, Professor Long has received a number of awards, including the prestigious Sir Zelman Cowen Universities Fund Prize for Discovery in Medical Research in 2016, and a number of recent CINSW Premier’s Awards for Outstanding Cancer Research: In 2014, she was awarded the Wildfire Award for the most highly-cited, original, peer-reviewed article published in 2011; and in 2013 she was named the Outstanding Cancer Research Fellow. She is the author of over 125 peer-reviewed publications in clinical and translational research in melanoma since 2011, including the New England Journal of Medicine, Lancet, Lancet Oncology, Journal of Clinical Oncology and Cancer Discovery. Professor Long has presented her work at international conferences and meetings on more than 120 occasions.  She is Chair of the ASCO Scientific Committee for melanoma and skin cancer, is medical oncology lead for the Australian Melanoma Management Guidelines Committee, is on the editorial boards of several high-impact journals, and is a member of the Melanoma Expert Panel for AJCC Cancer Staging System 8th edition.

Professor Long was awarded the University Medal in Organic Chemistry. She subsequently completed her PhD in Chemistry in the field of anti-cancer agents and their binding to DNA. She then moved to the USA to take up a Fulbright Postdoctoral Fellowship at Scripps Research Institute, exploring nanotechnology in cancer treatment, before returning to Australia to complete her MBBS (Hons). Professor Long became a Fellow of the Australasian College of Physicians in January 2008, specialising in medical oncology.

Graham Mann

Graham Mann is Research Director of the Melanoma Institute Australia and co-Director of the Centre for Cancer Research at the Westmead Institute. He co-leads a NHMRC research program on melanoma that is engaged in all aspects of melanoma control, from the genetics of melanoma risk and its environmental and psychological aspects, to the use of molecular markers and targets to improve the diagnosis and treatment of melanoma. He is Chair of the University of Sydney Cancer Research Network, and a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC).

Grant McArthur

Professor Grant McArthur is a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and holds a Ph.D. in Medical Biology.  He has been appointed the inaugural  Lorenzo  Galli  chair  position  in  Melanoma,  University  of  Melbourne, Co-Head Cancer Therapeutics and Practitioner Fellow NHMRC.  In 2004 he was awarded the Translational Research Award of the Foundation Nelia et Amadeo Barletta.   In 2005 he was awarded the Sir Edward Dunlop Clinical Cancer Research Fellowship of the Cancer Council of Victoria. He is national and international study Co-Chair of a number of clinical trials of targeted therapies. In 2015 he was inducted into the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Science. His research Interests include    clinical    trials    of    targeted    therapeutics,    personalised    medicine, immune-oncology, melanoma, cell cycle control, and functional imaging.  Professor McArthur sits on the Editorial Boards of Annals of Oncology, Anti-Cancer Drugs, the Journal  of  Clinical  Oncology,  the  Open  Clinical  Cancer  Journal,  Therapeutic Advances in Medical Oncology and the Journal of Personalised Medicine.   He has had over 195 publications including senior or first author publications in the following journals: New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of Clinical Oncology, Lancet Oncology, Cancer Discovery, Cancer Cell, Nature Cell Biology, Blood and EMBO.

Helen Rizos

Professor Helen Rizos is a cancer cell biologist with an international reputation in the field of melanoma senescence, tumour suppressor proteins and oncoproteins. Her work combines genetic analyses of melanoma tumours with functional molecular and cell biology in order to understand the role and regulation of genes and cellular pathways that influence the development and therapeutic response of melanoma. She recently moved to the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Macquarie University, is an NHMRC Senior Research and Head of the Department of Biomedical Sciences.

Helena Collgros

Dr Collgros obtained a bachelor in Medicine from the Faculty of Medicine of the Autonomous University of Barcelona (2003-2009). She completed Dermatology and Venereology specialization in Barcelona in 2014. In her third year of registrar, she attended the Sydney Melanoma Diagnostic Centre at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Melanoma Institute Australia at The Poche Centre for 3 months.

Since November 2014, she has been working as a dermatologist in a public university hospital (Hospital Germans Trias i Pujol) in Barcelona. Her fields of expertise include pigmented lesions, melanoma and skin cancer.

She has authored and co-authored more than 20 publications in National and International Journals.

John Thompson

John Thompson is the Executive Director of Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA), one of the world’s largest melanoma treatment and research centres.  He has been Executive Director of MIA since 1988, and in 1999 he was appointed as Professor of Melanoma and Surgical Oncology at the University of Sydney.

He is author of over 700 peer-reviewed scientific articles, as well as numerous book chapters, review articles and monographs.  In 2014 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to medicine in the field of oncology research, particularly melanoma, to international and national professional organisations, and to medical education.  In 2015 he was made an Honorary Fellow of the American Surgical Association and an inaugural Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.  He has been a pioneer in the sentinel lymph node biopsy technique, and developed the isolated limb infusion technique for melanoma.

Jonathan Stretch

Bio coming soon

Mark Faries

Mark Faries, MD, FACS is Professor of Surgery and Director of the Donald L. Morton Melanoma Research Program at the John Wayne Cancer Institute. Dr. Faries received his medical degree from Cornell University Medical College and completed general surgery residency at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the Principal Investigator for the second Multicenter Selective Lymphadenectomy Trial and conducts research in new surgical and immune therapies for the disease including intralesional therapies and adoptive T-cell transfer.

Keiran Smalley

Dr Smalley earned his PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Cambridge UK in 2001. He worked as a post-doctoral fellow in the Oncology Department of University College London the Institute of Cancer Research, Fulham Road and the Wistar Institute, Philadelphia. Currently Dr Smalley is a Professor in the Departments of Tumor Biology and Cutaneous Oncology at the Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL. He also currently the Donald A. Adam Endowed Chair in Melanoma Research and is the Director of the Melanoma and Skin Cancers Center of Excellence.

The lab of Dr Smalley focuses upon the development of targeted therapy strategies for melanoma and is currently funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the pharmaceutical industry and a number of philanthropic sources. Dr Smalleys work is highly translational in nature and work from his lab has led to the initiation of a number of clinical trials.

To date, Dr Smalley has published over 120 papers in top-peer reviewed journals including Cancer Research, Cancer Discovery, Cancer Cell, The New England Journal of Medicine, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the Lancet, Gastroenterology, and Clinical Cancer Research. He currently sits on the editorial boards of Clinical Cancer Research, Biochemical Pharmacology, Drugs, Melanoma Research and the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology and is the Associate Editor of Pharmacological Research.

Dr Smalley is a Charter Member of the Basic Mechanisms of Cancer Therapeutics Study Section for the NCI/NIH and has served on many other peer review panels for the Department of Defense, the State of Texas and numerous Melanoma Research Foundations. He has also fulfilled advisory roles with the University of Pennsylvania, The University of Pittsburgh and a number of pharmaceutical companies. Dr Smalley has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil in 2011 and in 2014 received a Science without Borders Scholarship from the Brazilian Government.

Mark Shackleton

Dr Mark Shackleton is a Medical Oncologist and Group Leader of the Cancer Development and Treatment Lab at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. After training in medical oncology in Melbourne and at the Ludwig Institute, Dr. Shackleton did his PhD at the WEHI and post-doctoral work at the University of Michigan. A winner of the 2006 Victorian Premier’s Award for Medical Research and a 2010 NHMRC Achievement Award, Dr Shackleton is a current Pfizer Australia Senior Research Fellow, a Fellow of the Victorian Endowment for Science, Knowledge and Innovation and was the 2012-13 recipient of the Australian Science Minister’s Prize for Life Scientist of the Year. His laboratory at Peter Mac focuses on understanding mechanisms of melanoma initiation and propagation.

Mark Smyth

Professor Mark Smyth is a Senior Scientist and Immunology Coordinator at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute. He completed his PhD in 1988 and trained at the NCI (1988-1992), before commencing his independent research career in Australia. Over the last 15 years he rekindled world-wide interest in cancer immune surveillance, defined immune-mediated dormancy of cancer, and the role of the host in chemotherapy responses in mice and humans. More recently, he has provided new means of classifying natural killer cell (NK) subtypes and two new targets for cancer immunotherapy.

Matt Carlino

Matteo Carlino is a Medical Oncologist and translational researcher at Westmead Hospital and Melanoma Institute Australia. He has recently completed a PhD examining predictors of response and mechanisms of resistance to BRAF and MEK inhibitor treated melanoma.

He has an ongoing research interest in examining response and resistance to immunotherapy and targeted therapy. He is an investigator on multiple phase I,II and III clinical trials in melanoma targeted and immunotherapy.

Melanie Lovell

Professor Lovell is a Palliative Medicine physician and Medical Director of the Greenwich Palliative Care Services. She has appointments as Clinical Associate Professor at University of Sydney and Adjunct Professor at University of Technology, Sydney. She chairs the Working Party which developed and updates the Australian Cancer Pain Guideline on the Cancer Council Australia wiki platform. She is lead investigator on a National Breast Cancer Foundation funded cluster randomised controlled trial of implementation strategies for the Australian Cancer Pain Guideline. She is an investigator with the national (PaCCSC) Palliative Care trials groups.

Michael Henderson

Michael A Henderson is Deputy Director of the Division of Surgical Oncology at the Peter MacCallum Cancer in Melbourne and Clinical Director Skin and Melanoma Unit at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. He completed his surgical training at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne and undertook a fellowship in Surgical Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center which included extensive post graduate training in the management of patients with melanoma. His research interests in melanoma include surgery and radiotherapy in patients with lymph node field relapse and he has authored several chapters in text books, contributed to the National Guidelines for both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer as well as published articles in the scientific literature. His other clinical interest is training at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level.

Michele Teng

Dr Michele Teng is head of the Cancer Immunoregulation and Immunotherapy Laboratory at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane, Australia. She completed her PhD in 2006 at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and University of Melbourne, Australia. Her group is investigating how tumour-induced immune suppression impedes the effective treatment of established cancer. Specifically, she is interested in examining the role of T regulatory cells (Tregs), T-cell anergy/exhaustion, and the IL-23-associated cytokine family in the local tumour microenvironment using experimental and de novo models of cancer. In addition, her group is determining how scheduling of immunotherapies can further improve their antitumour efficacy and have developed a preclinical mouse model to assess how different combination therapies impact on tumour immunity and immune related adverse events.

Nick Hayward

Prof. Hayward obtained his PhD from the University of Queensland in 1983 and is currently Head of the Oncogenomics Laboratory and Deputy Coordinator of the Cancer Program at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute. He has studied the molecular genetics of melanoma for >30 years and is a foundation member of the International Melanoma Genetics Consortium (GenoMEL) and the Society for Melanoma Research. His work spans molecular epidemiology, genetics, genomics, cell biology and mouse models of melanoma. He played key roles in the identification of CDK4, MITF, POT1, ACD and TERF2IP as familial melanoma susceptibility genes and has contributed significantly to several genome-wide association studies for melanoma and the associated phenotypic traits of pigmentation and naevi. Through his extensive research collaborations he has contributed to the understanding of key somatic mutations that drive melanocyte neoplasia, including the seminal findings of BRAF mutations in naevi, and MAP3K5, MAP3K9, RASA2 and RAC1 mutations in melanoma. He is currently a principal investigator of the Australian Melanoma Genome Project – an endeavour that aims to characterize the genomic landscape of somatic mutations and chromosomal aberrations in >500 melanomas.

Omgo Nieweg

Omgo E. Nieweg received his M.D. (1976) and Ph.D. (1983) degrees at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. He completed residencies in nuclear medicine and surgery. He did a fellowship in surgical oncology at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas 1990-1991. He was a staff member in the Department of Surgery, The Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam from 1992 to 2013. Subsequently, he joined the Melanoma Institute Australia. He was appointed as clinical professor at the University of Sydney in 2014 and became a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 2015. He has contributed to national and international studies on various aspects of diagnosis, imaging, staging and surgical treatment of melanoma, breast cancer, penile cancer and soft tissue sarcoma.

Pablo Fernández-Peñas

Pablo Fernández-Peñas is Associate Professor in Dermatology at the University of Sydney, Head of the Department of Dermatology at Westmead Hospital and Head of Research at the Skin and Cancer Foundation Australia in Sydney, Australia. Previously, he was Staff Specialist (Dermatology) at Hospital Universitario de la Princesa and Clinical Professor at the Universidad Autonoma, both in Madrid, Spain.

His main fields of interest are immunology, oncodermatology, quality of life, and information technologies. He is a passionate teacher, involved in dermatology teaching to Medical Students, Registrars, General Practitioners and general public. He has 130+ publications in peer review journals, has participated in 35+ clinical trials, and has been invited to lecture in national and international meetings.

Since moving to Sydney in 2007, Pablo has expanded dermatological services, and research and education opportunities in Western Sydney. He opened the Dermatology Comprehensive Clinical Centre at Westmead Hospital, and has built strong links with the Westmead Cancer Care Centre and the Skin and Cancer Foundation Australia, participating in melanoma, non-melanoma skin cancer, cutaneous lymphoma, hidradenitis and psoriasis clinical trials, and leading research projects in Oncodermatology and Quality of Life. He has opened clinics for Severe Psoriasis, Severe Eczema, Hidradenitis Suppurativa, Cutaneous Lymphoma, Graft versus Host Disease, and Melanoma at Westmead Hospital.

Pascale Guitera

Associate Professor Pascale Guitera has done her studies in Paris and was awarded a fellowship in the largest Dermatology Department in Paris (Hopital Saint-Louis). She has completed a PhD in collaboration with the Curie Institute on instrumentations for the diagnosis of skin tumours at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney. She has been awarded the Australasian College of Dermatologist Fellowship in 2007. She is now director of the Sydney Melanoma Diagnostic Centre at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and the Dermatology Department of the Melanoma Institute Australia. She is holding an Associate Professor academic position at Sydney University.

Peter Soyer

Professor Soyer, an academic dermatologist from Austria, is a world leader in the field of dermatology with particular expertise in the areas of clinical dermatology, dermatooncology, dermatopathology and dermatologic imaging (dermoscopy and reflectance confocal microscopy). His main research focus is skin cancer, and he is lead investigator of the recent NHMRC funded Centre of Research Excellence for the Study of Naevi. Professor Soyer is Head of the South-West Clinical Cluster & Deputy Head, School of Medicine, The University of Queensland (UQ); the inaugural Chair and Director, UQ Dermatology Research Centre; and is also the Director, Dermatology Department, Princess Alexandra Hospital.

Richard Scolyer

Consultant Pathologist and Co-Director of Research, Melanoma Institute Australia
Senior Staff Specialist, Tissue Pathology and Diagnostic Oncology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney
Clinical Professor, Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney
National Health and Medical Research Council Practitioner Fellow

Richard Scolyer studied medicine at the University of Tasmania (BMedSci, MBBS). After completing clinical training in Australia and overseas, he undertook pathology training at the Canberra Hospital and at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital leading to Fellowship of the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia. Richard is currently Consultant Pathologist and Co-Director of Research, Melanoma Institute Australia; Senior Staff Specialist, Tissue Pathology and Diagnostic Oncology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney; and Clinical Professor, The University of Sydney.

Richard has presented on more than 150 occasions at conferences throughout the world, and is a co-author of more than 400 articles and book chapters on melanocytic pathology and related research. In 2006, Richard was awarded the degree of Doctor of Medicine by The University of Sydney for his thesis of publications on melanocytic pathology. He received a NSW Premier’s Award for Outstanding Cancer Research in 2009 and 2012 and the Thomson Reuters 2015 Citation Award in the Clinical Medicine category. In 2016, Richard was appointed editor of the 4th Edition of the World Health Organisation Classification of Tumours Skin Tumours volume. He is also Vice Chair of the Melanoma Expert Panel of the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) for the 8th edition of their Cancer Staging System, an editorial board member of the American Journal of Surgical Pathology, a member of the International Editorial Advisory Board of Histopathology and Senior Associate Editor of Pathology. Richard is currently President of the Australasian Division of the International Academy of Pathology. Together with other MIA colleagues, Richard is chief investigator on a 5 year NHMRC program grant  and has a personal Fellowship from the NHMRC.

Robyn Saw

Robyn Saw MBBS, FRACS, MS is an Associate Professor in Surgery at the University of Sydney.  She is a Surgical Oncologist with the Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA) and also a General Surgeon and Head of the Department of Melanoma and Surgical Oncology at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. Robyn has a specific interest in the surgical management of melanoma and other skin cancers.

Research that can translate into clinical benefit for patients is the focus of her research activity. This includes a research interest in the development of lymphoedema and quality of life following lymph node surgery and involvement in the MIA biospecimen bank.

Rod Dunbar

Professor Rod Dunbar holds both a medical degree (MBChB) and a PhD from the University of Otago in New Zealand.  He spent 6 years as a post-doctoral research fellow in human immunology at the University of Oxford, before returning to New Zealand in 2002 under a Wellcome Trust International Senior Research Fellowship to establish his current lab at the University of Auckland’s School of Biological Sciences.  Since 2009 Professor Dunbar has also served as the Director of the Maurice Wilkins Centre, the national Centre of Research Excellence focused on the discovery of new human therapeutics.

Scott Byrne

A/Prof Scott Byrne is a senior academic in the Discipline of Infectious Diseases and Immunology at The University of Sydney. As Head of The Cellular Photoimmunology Group, A/Prof Byrne and his team are dedicated to understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which sunlight manipulates the immune response. He has established an international reputation in the field of photoimmunology and made numerous seminal contributions in this area, particularly his discovery that ultraviolet (UV) radiation activates a unique type of regulatory B cell. This is allowing him to design novel intervention strategies aimed at either boosting B-Reg activation in the context of an autoimmune attack, or depleting B-Regs to prevent and treat skin cancer.

Scott Menzies

Scott Menzies is a Professor (Discipline of Dermatology) at the University of Sydney.
He has been researching and treating patients with skin cancer since 1988. For the majority of this time his activities have been solely related to skin cancer. In particular, he has a strong clinical interest in methods for the diagnosis of melanoma and moles. His main research interest involves the development of instrumentation for the diagnosis of melanoma on the skin. He also has a strong background in teaching undergraduates, general practitioners and specialists on methods for diagnosing melanoma and is the author of 5 books on this subject.

Victoria Mar

Dr Victoria Mar is a Fellow of the Australian College of Dermatologists and a VMO at the Victorian Melanoma Service. Her primary interest is the early detection, management and follow-up of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer. She completed her PhD in 2014, which investigated the clinical and molecular characteristics of aggressive melanoma. She maintains an active interest in research as an Associate Investigator on the Melbourne Melanoma Project. She is on the Scientific Advisory Committee and Academic Research Committee of the Australasian College of Dermatologists and is on the Executive committee of the Australian and New Zealand Melanoma Trials Group.

Oral Presenters: