The Sentinel


Thursday, May 31, 2018

President's Message – June 2018

Dear Colleagues,

As summer begins, I am happy to share news about a number of SITC initiatives that our members are involved in, addressing important aspects of our field.

First, I would like to congratulate members of the SITC Immunoscore Validation Project – whose Steering Committee is Chaired by Past SITC President Bernard A. Fox, PhD – on the recent publication of its study's findings in The Lancet. Involving tissues banked from more than 3,500 patients and more than a dozen SITC member volunteers across 13 countries, the study showed that the Immunoscore measures of stage I-III colon cancer patients positively correlated with survival and time to recurrence. I highly recommend that you read this important publication.

Second, I would like to commend the work of the SITC Cancer Immune Responsiveness Task Force and Immune Biomarkers Committee for their effort in hosting a pair of SITC workshops earlier this month in San Francisco. More than 200 attendees contributed to discussion around the current major questions in our field which will lead directly to new initiatives for the society in these areas. Attendees also developed new collaborations to move the field forward. Stay tuned as these new initiatives are announced, and materials from these workshops become available to members and the general public later this month.

Third, I want to share the news that our highly anticipated Cancer Immunotherapy Guidelines for cutaneous melanoma update published on Wednesday! First published in 2013, these clinical guidelines serve to educate a clinical audience on a disease state that was among the first to achieve significant progress via cancer immunotherapy for patients. Thank you to the Cancer Immunotherapy Guidelines Cutaneous Melanoma Subcommittee for your major commitment to this effort! This melanoma manuscript is the first in our society's series of Cancer Immunotherapy Guidelines to receive an update. New guidelines in non-small cell lung cancer and head and neck cancers will publish this year in our society's Journal for ImmunoTherapy of Cancer (JITC).

Another way that SITC seeks to improve our field's future is through the SITC Sparkathon. Young investigators can apply now to participate in the SITC Sparkathon Class of 2018. This team science opportunity, which will last 12-18 months, forges new collaborations among the field's brightest early career scientists as they seek to solve an existing obstacle. These scientists will receive valuable professional development from top business coaches and SITC leadership. Applications are due by 11:59 p.m. EDT on Monday, June 18.

The inaugural SITC Sparkathon Class of 2017, teams TimIOs and METIOR Incubator, will present their projects during the 33rd Annual Meeting this November.

Very soon, our society members will elect a new Vice President in the upcoming annual election. From June 14–28, the 2018 SITC Election will include the Vice President position and three At-Large Director openings on the Board of Directors. Learn more about this year's candidates, who are also listed below, and please remember to vote (online voting begins June 14).

Finally, I am happy to share that current registration numbers confirm our expectations that SITC 2018 will be our society's most highly attended yet! Register now to attend SITC 2018 and secure your housing. Also, don't forget the deadline to submit regular abstracts, late-breaking abstract applications or applications to the Immune Escape program is 5 p.m. PDT on Aug. 1.

I'm looking forward to seeing you all at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. this November!


Lisa H. Butterfield, PhD
SITC President

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