2012 the 1st St.Gallen EORTC Gastrointestinal Cancer Conference (SG-GICC-2012) was taking place at the Conference Center of „Einstein Hotel & Spa“ in St.Gallen/Switzerland, jointly organised by St.Gallen Oncology Conferences (SONK) and the GI Cancer Group of EORTC, the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer in Brussels/Belgium. This start into a new conference line was a „full success“! More than 300 surgical, medical and radio-oncological GI-cancer experts from more than 40 countries worldwide were participating at the first edition of this new St.Gallen oncology conference line, which will complement the well-known bi-annual St.Gallen International Breast Cancer Conferences in spring of „even“ years. The conference was planned and executed under the chairmanship of Professor Dr. med. Florian Otto from the privately operated Tumor and Breast Center ZeTuP in St.Gallen and Professor Manfred Lutz from the Caritas Clinic St. Theresia in Saarbrücken, past-chairman of the EORTC Gastrointestial Working Group, in conjunction with a panel of invited 48 faculty members, moderators, speakers and panelists from all over the world.
Since the GI tract is composed of several target organs, the organizers of this new line of bi-annual GI cancer conferences have decided to deal for this 1st St.Gallen GICC-conference primarily, but not exclusively, with the cancers of the upper GI tract, that is of esophageus, stomach, and the gastro-esophageal junction – especially regarding the treatment consensus session – with the tumors of the lower GI tract (colon, rectum) to follow as the main topic in 2 years (see below). The detailled conference programme of SG-GICC-2012 can be visited here, and the proceedings of the SG-GICC-2012 conference, containing most of the invited expert lectures, are presently in print as a future volume in the Series „Recent Results in Cancer Research“ (RRCR), published by Springer Publishers Heidelberg-Berlin-New York, to appear during fall of 2012.
Following the well-established pattern of the internationally recognized St.Gallen Breast Cancer Conferences, the final „consensus statement“ about the presently optimal treatment of GI cancers of the upper GI-tract, edited by an international expert panel at the end of the 3-day GICC-2012 conference, will be published fast-track, in summer of 2012 in the European Journal of Cancer, the offical publication of EORTC. Like in the case of the well-known St.Gallen Breast Cancer Conferences, the organizers and chairpersons of the SG-GICC-Conference also plan to edit and publish a bi-annually updated GI-Cancer-Treatment-Consensus (with certain topical preference) each of the likewise bi-annual St.Gallen GICC-conferences, regulary held in mid-March of „even“ years, the next GICC conference being already annonuced for 6-8 March 2014, again in St.Gallen/Eastern Switzerland.
Professor Dr. med. Hans-Jörg Senn
Vice-Chairman, Foundation SONK (St.Gallen Oncology Conferences)