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Report on the last COGNO Annual Scientific Meeting

 November 8, 2018

Report on the last Annual Scientific Meeting of the Cooperative Trials Group for Neuro-Oncology by Mark Pinkham

The Cooperative Trials Group for Neuro-Oncology (COGNO) is an Australian clinical trials group which strives to achieve better health outcomes for patients and those affected by brain tumours through clinical trials research. COGNO was established in 2007 and now has over 700 members. Our 11th Annual Scientific Meeting was held in Brisbane, Australia October 7-9, 2018 and was attended by 176 registrants spanning a range of clinical and research disciplines in addition to consumer advocates and other stakeholders.

The meeting theme was Targeting Survival: Living Well with Brain Cancer in the Era of Precision Treatments,and we enjoyed superb, wide-ranging talks delivered by international guest speakers Prof Mark Gilbert (Chief of Neuro-oncology Branch at NIH, USA), Prof Erik Sulman (Radiation Oncologist at NYU Langone, USA), Prof Susan Chang (Director of Neuro-oncology at UCSF, USA) and Dr Terri Armstrong (Professor of Nursing, and Senior Investigator at Neuro-oncology Branch at NIH, USA).  In addition, the meeting comprised lectures from 12 national speakers, international and local trial updates, new trial concepts, 18 proffered oral papers and 27 poster presentations.

Personal highlights included discussion around the challenges of testing immunotherapies in clinical trials for glioma; appropriate trial endpoint selection beyond radiological measures of outcome; technological advances and organisational changes to better support patients with CNS disease; the beneficial effects of exercise on patients with glioma; and preclinical work describing the use of focussed ultrasound to increase antibody theranostic uptake in primary brain tumours. 

The important and varied work going on through COGNO was evident to all, and the strength of our international collaborations continues to grow.  The next annual scientific meeting is being held in Sydney October 27-28, 2019.  COGNO membership is free and joining is simple via the website https://cogno.org.au/members.aspx.

Mark Pinkham

Convenor, Radiation Oncologist, Gamma Knife Centre of QLD, Brisbane, Australia

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