The Cancer Foundation of India (www.cficancer.org) hosted the 11th General assembly and APOCP11 Conference on Cancer Prevention of the Asian Pacific Organization for Cancer Prevention (APOCP) from December 8-10, 2022, at Kolkata (www.apocp11.org). The conference had participation from about 240 Indian and foreign public health and cancer research scientists, oncologists, and policymakers. The conference provided a wide-ranging platform for discussions and the exchange of research information on epidemiology, risk factors, biomarkers, and screening of common cancers and HPV vaccination in the Asia-Pacific region.
In the Inaugural Session of the conference, Dr Soumya Swaminathan (Chief Scientist, WHO, Geneva) gave the Inaugural address on ‘Cancer Research in LMICs’. Then, in his Guest Lecture, Dr R. Sankaranarayanan (Special Advisor on Cancer Control to the Director of IARC and former Head of screening group, IARC, Lyon, France) spoke on making cancer healthcare affordable: the need of the hour. And finally, Prof. Elisabete Weiderpass (Director, IARC, Lyon, France) delivered the Keynote address on IARC activities and initiatives in Asia-Pacific region. The Twenty-four Plenary Lectures were delivered and chaired by eminent cancer research scientists from Japan, India, Iran, Turkey, Kazakhstan, South Africa, the UK, USA and IARC in France.
The conference Agenda included two scientific sessions devoted to the prevention, early detection and treatment of cervical cancer and HPV vaccination in girls. In addition, a Panel Discussion was on the ‘WHO’s call for eliminating cervical cancer, its challenges, and the way forward in Low- and middle-income countries’. The other scientific sessions were Cancer in Asia-Pacific Region, Cancer Risk Factors and Prevention, Breast Cancer Control – Strategy and Policy, Breast Cancer Risk Factors and prevention, Translation Research in Cancer, and Novel approaches in cancer prevention and treatment. Free-paper oral presentations by younger scientists and students followed the plenary lectures in each scientific session. After a peer review, the experts selected 38 Oral and 69 Posters for presentations which included young scientists and students from Iran, India, Kazakhstan, Taiwan, Thailand, and Malaysia. In addition, an exposition of their role in cancer prevention by Serum Institute, Pune; MSD, India; PreDomix, Gurgaon; Cepheid, India; DSS, New Delhi; Niramai Health, Bangaluru and CNCI, Kolkata, was also arranged.
A meeting of the Executive Committee of the APOCP was attended in person by members from India, Japan, Iran, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Turkey, Thailand. At the same time, the members from Thailand, Malaysia, Russia and Australia attended the meeting virtually. The members unanimously selected Professor Nurbek Igissinov, Head of Central Asian Institute for Medical Research, Astana, Kazakhstan, as the President, APOCP for the year 2023-24. The 12th APOCP general assembly will be held on 2024 (the exact date will be announced later). The 12th GA assembly will be hosted by Kyrgyz State Medical Academy and will be held in Central Asian beautiful resort of Issyk-Kul (the Eyes of the Earth from space).