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Researchers, Survivors, Advocates and Physicians Convene to Discuss Innovations in Lung Cancer Research, Treatment and Advocacy at the Largest-Attended World Conference on Lung Cancer

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TORONTO, Sept. 23, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Patients, survivors and advocates joined researchers and physicians from across the globe to discuss the future of lung cancer at the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer’s (IASLC’s) 19th World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC) in Toronto, Canada. The conference’s first press briefing highlighted the record-breaking number of registered attendees (over 7,300), reviewed patient-caregiver communities working to accelerate research, evaluated survey data on the emotional needs of lung cancer survivors and underscored the impact of comprehensive genomic profiling on patient care.

The press conference opened with a welcome message from conference co-presidents Natasha B. Leighl, M.D., BSc, MSc; Andrea Bezjak, M.D., FRCPC, MSc; and Gail Darling M.D., FRCSC, who have worked tirelessly to make this year’s conference in Toronto highly successful. 

Oncogene-driven patient-caregiver communities creating new paradigm for non-small cell lung cancer research
Recent review of patient-caregiver communities focusing on non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with genomic alterations showed that these groups are improving outcomes by supporting patients and caregivers, increasing awareness and education and accelerating research.   

Patient advocate Janet Freeman-Daily, co-founder of the community known as The ROS1ders, Robert C. Doebele, M.D., Ph.D., of the Division of Medical Oncology at the University of Colorado and Christine M. Lovly, M.D., Ph.D., of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, worked as a team to identify the impact of oncogene-driven patient groups.

“These oncogene-driven groups created by patients and caregivers are ushering in a new era for lung cancer research partnerships,” said Freeman-Daily. “By collaborating with researchers, clinicians, advocacy groups and industry, we are accelerating research into our own diseases.”

Read the full press release here.

Survey data from Lung Cancer Alliance highlights the unmet emotional needs of long-term lung cancer survivors
Recent survey data showed lung cancer survivors indicate that emotional effects, unlike physical impacts, are more problematic for long-term survivors after five years. Maureen Rigney, a licensed clinical social worker and Director of Support Initiatives for Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA), and her team led an online survey on the treatment and smoking histories of 820 respondents.

“Symptoms like shortness of breath and fatigue are just a few of the physical side effects that can occur during and post treatment,” said Rigney. “Emotionally, lung cancer stigma and anxiety don’t end when treatment is over.”

The most common late and long-term symptoms include shortness of breath, fatigue, short-term memory and anxiety. The long-term survival rate of those who have been diagnosed with lung cancer continues to increase, calling for additional research to fully understand how to best support this patient population.

Read the full press release here.

Comprehensive genomic profiling aids in the identification of personalized therapeutic options
Findings from a recent study demonstrate that comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) is a useful tool in directing patient care, including the identification of targeted therapies and enrollment in clinical trials.

Kimberly Rohan, nurse practitioner at the Edward Cancer Center in Naperville, Illinois, and her team performed a retrospective analysis on the results of CGP collected from 46 patients with a cancer diagnosis, identifying 263 alterations in this patient population.

“We’re thrilled to have achieved our goal, analyzing how information obtained in genomic profiling can impact or change patient care,” said Rohan. “Our findings, ranging from 6 to 13 percent of patients referred to clinical trials, exceeds the national clinical trial enrollment and highlights a substantial opportunity for patients undergoing cancer treatment.” 

Read the full press release here.

Livestreams of the daily press conferences are available here.

About the WCLC
The World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC) is the world’s largest meeting dedicated solely to lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies, attracting over 7,000 researchers, physicians and specialists from more than 100 countries. The conference will cover a wide range of disciplines and unveil research studies and clinical trial results. For more information, visit http://wclc2018.iaslc.org/. Follow the conference on social media with: #WCLC2018.

About the IASLC
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) is the only global organization dedicated solely to the study of lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies. Founded in 1974, the association's membership includes more than 7,500 lung cancer specialists across all disciplines in over 100 countries, forming a global network working together to conquer lung and thoracic cancers worldwide. The association also publishes the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the primary educational and informational publication for topics relevant to the prevention, detection, diagnosis and treatment of all thoracic malignancies. Visit www.iaslc.org for more information. You can also follow the IASLC on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

Contacts:  
Lisa Rivero  Becky Bunn, MSc
Vice President    Public Relations Manager
lrivero@jpa.com| +1 617-657-1305 Becky.Bunn@IASLC.org | +1 720-254-9509

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