When English physician Dr. John Snow methodically investigated the 1854 Broad Street cholera outbreak that killed 616 people, he postulated that its cause was a contaminated water pump. He is now heralded as one of the “fathers of epidemiology,” but he faced much opposition when he initially shared his findings with London public health officials. Dr. Snow’s germ hypothesis challenged the prevailing miasma theory of disease, which attributed “bad air” as the cause of disease spread. Dr. Snow’s theory ultimately won out, bringing about the popularization of germ theory, which has saved innumerable lives. Dr. Snow’s important work was the latest in a body of knowledge that had progressed over centuries, building on and combining the efforts and discoveries of many physicians and scholars. Some of these scientists include:
- Thucydides, a Greek historian born in 460
- Ibn Sina, a Persian physician and polymath born in 980
- Thomas de Garbo, an Italian physician born in 1305
- Ignaz Semmelweis, a Hungarian obstetrician born in 1818
- Louis Pasteur, a biologist, microbiologist, and chemist born in 1822
- Robert Koch, a German physician and microbiologist born in 1843
In this case study from epidemiology, we see that bringing together research from all the world is the best way to advance medicine. As oncologists, our primary medical concern is cancer care. The worldwide cancer burden is growing every year: Are we poised to meet this challenge?
Enter, ASCO Breakthrough.
You may be surprised to learn that ASCO Breakthrough is ASCO’s first international conference. Working with highly regarded oncology societies in Thailand, China, Japan, South Korea, and others, ASCO Breakthrough will bring together innovative speakers, researchers, and leaders in an unprecedented conference focused on oncology clinical care, health technology, and medical research. This meeting is truly unique, because ASCO is creating a platform for bridging these disciplines from all over the world.
I hope you’ll join us at ASCO Breakthrough on for October 11-13, 2019, at Centara Grand at CentralWorld in Bangkok, Thailand! I’m really looking forward to participating in the meeting. I’ll be speaking on Friday, October 11, on the topic of “Advancing Research With Social Media.” The other panel speakers include moderator Dr. Gilberto de Lima Lopes Jr., Celine Tien (“Developing Gamified Therapy for Chronic Pain Through Virtual Reality and Social Gaming”), Dr. Christopher Hartshorn (“Monitoring Patients With Cancer in the Ambulatory Setting for Clinical Decision Support”), and Vera Atema (“Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapies”).
The program will focus on solving clinical issues in cancer care using innovations in molecular diagnostics, immunology, access to care, robotic surgery, artificial intelligence, ethics in gene editing, novel therapeutics, and more. Fascinating, right?
What connections, ideas, and hypotheses will ASCO Breakthrough bring forth? I believe the possibilities are endless.
ASCO Breakthrough will take place October 11-13, 2019 in Bangkok, Thailand. Learn more.