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As the ARVO Ocular Oncogenesis and Oncology Conference comes to an end we cannot help but smile when looking back and see all that was achieved during these past days.

We witnessed brilliant cross-disciplinary collaborations not only between different medical specialities but also between scientists, patients and patient advocates.

 

The Ocular Oncogenesis and Oncology Conference, held on the 18th-21st of July 2018, in Lisbon, and organized by the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) and the Champalimaud Foundation, was the first of its kind. It counted with a strong world-wide representation of experts in the field which allowed for the high quality level of the meeting. Making the bridge between science and clinical practice is crucial since the ultimate goal that all health related professionals are seaking is improved patient care.

The Melanoma Patient Network Europe Founder, Professor Betyna Ryll, presented us with an inspiring opening plenary lecture entitled “The patient of the future”. A focus was put on the fact that patient education and involvement in treatment decisions improves compliance, reduces disease related anxiety and improves overall quality of life.

A strong contribution from other UM CURE 2020 consortium members was also present in the basic science and clinical research sessions. The discussion consisted in clinical updates on ocular neoplasia’s and how advances in other oncology fields may contribute to the management of the previous, such as uveal melanoma (UM).

Professor Martine Jager (Leiden University, The Netherlands) talked about how genetic information (characteristics inside UM’s cells that influence clinical evolution) can predict uveal melanoma’s clinical evolution and the benefits for patient’s clinical management of knowing this information. From a different perspective, Professor Sarah Coupland (Royal Liverpool Hospital, United Kingdom) who was a moderator in many of the sessions, elaborated on the pathological findings (information that can be seen in the analysis of UM’s cell in the laboratory) of UM. Dr. Laurence Desjardins (Institut Curie, France) gave us her perspective on how the management of ocular tumours will evolve.

We would like to thank all the participants for contributing to the making of an outstanding meeting, specially to those who collaborated in the video series we will be uploading in the following weeks on our social media channels.