[ASC-list] Online Briefing starting soon: The race to cure cancer with immunotherapy is on

Susannah Eliott Susannah at smc.org.au
Wed Mar 14 22:18:50 UTC 2018

If you’d like to hear a snippet from the Eradicate Cancer conference opened by Greg Hunt in Melbourne this morning, feel free to tune in to this briefing starting soon.

From: AusSMC [mailto:info at smc.org.au]
Sent: Thursday, 15 March 2018 7:30 AM
To: Susannah Eliott <Susannah at smc.org.au>
Subject: Background Briefing Reminder: The race to cure cancer by harnessing the body’s immune system is on

15 March 2018
View this email in your browser<http://mailchi.mp/smc/background-briefing-the-race-to-cure-cancer-by-harnessing-the-bodys-immune-system-is-on-1150665?e=69d18f3830>
AEDT = Australian Eastern Daylight Time


For immediate release

BRIEFING: The race to cure cancer by harnessing the body’s immune system is on

BRIEFING: Thursday 15 March at 9.40am AEDT ONLINE

The race is on to develop affordable, off-the-shelf treatments that harness the body’s immune system to kill cancers, and Australia is leading the pack.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology recently named CAR T immunotherapy the 2018 Advance of the Year. CAR T uses a gene-editing technology called CRISPR to genetically reprogram a patient's own immune cells, enhancing the body’s ability to fight cancer.

Cartherics is an Aussie firm that’s filed a patent on its off-the-shelf CAR T-cell immunotherapy, with the aim of trialling the treatment in the next three years.

Two other immunotherapeutic products have already been approved in the US, so what’s special about Cartherics’ therapy? Those other treatments must be tailored to individuals, which makes them prohibitively expensive – up to US$450,000 per patient. The off-the-shelf nature of CAR T should reduce that cost ten-fold.

Immunotherapy is the biggest emerging trend in cancer therapy; already, a small number of patients at the end of their treatment options, some with virtually no hope of survival, have described ‘melting' their cancer away within months of receiving this type of treatment.

This briefing coincides with the Eradicate Cancer Conference<https://smc.us7.list-manage.com/track/click?u=fdc5316d8cbd7a248ee94eaeb&id=04afe80076&e=69d18f3830> being held at the Melbourne Convention Centre from 15 March. Join us to hear from Professor Irving Weissman, internationally acclaimed cancer biologist from Stanford University and Professor Alan Trounson, well known stem cell scientist and CEO of Cartherics.


  *   Irv Weissman is Professor of Pathology and Developmental Biology at Stanford University, Member Stanford Cancer Institute, and Co-Director of the Stanford Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. He is a leading expert in the fields of cancer stem cell biology and immunotherapy.

  *   Alan Trounson is CEO and Executive Director of Cartherics, an Australian company formed through a partnership between Monash University, Hudson Institute of Medical Research, and Monash Health. He is also Emeritus Professor, Monash University and Distinguished Scientist, Hudson Institute of Medical Research.  From 2007-2014, he was President of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, the state’s $3 billion stem cell agency driving research in stem cell biology and facilitating the translation of stem cell discoveries into clinical therapies.

Join the briefing

Date: Thursday 15 March 2018
Start time: 9.40am AEDT
Duration: Approx 30 min
Venue: Online

Journalists can follow the briefing online via audio and video streaming. Each presenter will speak for 5-7 minutes followed by questions. Journalists will have the opportunity to ask questions online.

1. Go to the briefing web portal by clicking here 5 minutes before the start time or anytime during the briefing<https://smc.us7.list-manage.com/track/click?u=fdc5316d8cbd7a248ee94eaeb&id=9ec41681f1&e=69d18f3830>. Alternatively go to scimex.org<https://smc.us7.list-manage.com/track/click?u=fdc5316d8cbd7a248ee94eaeb&id=f37d00d264&e=69d18f3830> and follow the links.
2. Enter your name and email address
3. Click "Join".
If you are having difficulties logging in, we suggest you try pasting the link into a different browser.
(System requirements: You will need a broadband connection and speakers/headphones to hear the event. Allow 1-2 mins for your computer to be configured correctly, install ActiveX, if asked)

1. For phone only access please call: 02 8518 1927.
2. Enter access code 570 951 973#. Wait for the prompt and press #.
Radio stations can also record the briefing over a phone line. If you would like to make sure that you can connect, please contact us to arrange a quick test before the day.
If you have any problems joining the briefing online, phone Webex on 1800 493 239 quoting event number 570 951 973.
Audio files will be posted on scimex.org<https://smc.us7.list-manage.com/track/click?u=fdc5316d8cbd7a248ee94eaeb&id=6fbece9429&e=69d18f3830> as soon as possible after the event.
For further information, please contact the AusSMC on 08 7120 8666 or email info at smc.org.au<mailto:info at smc.org.au>.


The AusSMC generally runs two different types of media briefings:
NEWS BRIEFINGS – Where new research or data will be released as part of the briefing
BACKGROUND BRIEFINGS – Where experts discuss an issue which is in the news or an issue we consider newsworthy, but no new research or data is being released

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Disclaimer: Please note that any views expressed are the personal opinions of the experts named. They do not represent the views of the AusSMC or any other organisation unless specifically stated. The AusSMC attempts to provide a range of views from the scientific community.

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