AACR Virtual Annual Meeting I: A Roundup of Cancer Research Catalyst Posts

Just over a month ago, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) held the first portion of its Annual Meeting in an entirely virtual format, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We were thrilled to welcome more than 61,000 attendees for two days of presentations on some of the most important developments in cancer research. Thousands more logged on in the days following the meeting to view the scientific sessions.

Of course, the specter of COVID-19 influenced the program. The pandemic prompted the AACR’s decision to transform the Annual Meeting from an in-person meeting scheduled for San Diego to an all-virtual conference. COVID-19 also had an immediate effect on cancer research and treatment, as many patients had to temporarily halt treatments and many research labs went on hiatus. 

A dynamic session on the intersection of COVID-19 and cancer was one highlight of the program. But the depth and breadth of the scientific program, from timely clinical trial results to talks on immunotherapy, liquid biopsies, adoptive cell therapy, prevention, and more, served as a reminder that cancer research continues on, and is the bedrock of the AACR’s mission to prevent and cure all cancers.  

AACR staffers and Annual Meeting chairpersons and committee members are hard at work finalizing the program for Virtual Annual Meeting II, set to take place June 22-24. The second portion of the meeting will be just as robust as the first, encompassing basic and translational science, cancer policy, timely reports on COVID-19 and cancer, and a broad range of educational sessions. Cancer Research Catalyst will again provide comprehensive coverage of the scientific program; subscribe to the blog and follow the AACR on social media to make sure you don’t miss a post. In the meantime, you can check out Virtual Annual Meeting coverage from Cancer Today, the AACR’s magazine aimed at cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers. And in case you missed any of our posts, here’s the full slate.

A User’s Guide to the Virtual Annual Meeting

Opening Session Highlights, Including Remarks from AACR Leaders

Improving Responses to BRAF and MEK Inhibitors in Melanoma

Promises and Challenges of Expanding the Use of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors Through Combination Therapy

Two Liquid Biopsy Tests Could Facilitate Early Detection of Cancer

FDA Approves Alternative Dosing Schedule for Pembrolizumab Following Annual Meeting Presentation

A Global Perspective of COVID-19 in Patients with Cancer

Using Biomarkers to Predict Responses to Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors

Study Results Provide Basis for FDA Approval of Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer

Showcasing Technological Advances in Adoptive Cell Transfer

Studies Highlight Continued Innovations in Immunotherapy

Insights Gained from AACR Project GENIE

Using Chemistry as a Catalyst for Drug Development

Identifying and Targeting RAS Regulatory Mechanisms