Imedex and ESMO's Annual Gastrointestinal Cancer Congress Reports Record Year in 2016

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ESMO 18th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer Surpasses 3,500 Attendees

"The Congress in Barcelona has become THE meeting on GI cancer with a focus on innovation, new directions in GI cancer, and education." -- Congress co-chair Eric Van Cutsem, MD, PhD

Investigators and healthcare professionals from the gastrointestinal cancer healthcare community around the world came together 29 June – 2 July for the ESMO 18th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer in Barcelona, Spain.

Congress on GI Cancer Surpasses 3,500 Attendees

The Congress continues to attract the global healthcare community to its dynamic continuing medical education event featuring a robust, cutting-edge agenda. More than 3,500 attendees, including physicians, researchers, nurses, and other healthcare professionals from more than 100 countries gathered at the annual four-day Congress, demonstrating its position as a leading forum to exchange ideas and opinions to advance scientific and technical knowledge for the gastrointestinal community. Over 80 prominent opinion leaders from the world’s leading institutions served as faculty and scientific community members.

Cutting-Edge Scientific Program

“I am happy to see the Congress in Barcelona has become THE meeting on GI cancer with a focus on innovation, new directions in GI cancer, and education,” stated Congress co-chair Eric Van Cutsem, MD, PhD. “It has become an important meeting point for clinicians, researchers and investigators with an interest or focus on GI cancer.”

Added Congress co-chair Mario Dicato, MD, “This has again been an essential educational Congress. In just a few days the attendees were exposed to extensive clinical and research advancements in the entire field of gastrointestinal oncology. Formal "meet the expert” sessions, keynote lectures, case presentations, and interactive discussions favor audience participation. As parallel sessions are limited, it is easy for the attendee to cover the whole field and benefit from practice changing take home updates.”

The Congress continued its tradition as a forum for recent or late-breaking data to be released to the global community. Data from the oral presentations and poster presentations has been published by the Annals of Oncology in a special printed journal supplement.

Record Number of Abstracts Submitted

Hundreds of abstracts were accepted for presentation this year from across the world, covering all major areas of gastrointestinal oncology. Leading abstract presentations included:

  • Safety and efficacy of cobimetinib and atezolizumab in a Phase 1b study of metastatic colorectal cancer
  • Efficacy and safety of regorafenib versus placebo in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma progressing on sorafenib: results of the international, randomized phase 3 RESORCE trial
  • The E-DIS study, a randomized discontinuation trial of first-line chemotherapy in patients with metastatic squamous-cell esophageal cancer: efficacy and quality of life results.

Continuing a Congress tradition, travel grants were awarded to candidates from traditionally underrepresented geographies for leading original abstracts. This year’s grants brought candidates from as far as India and Uzbekistan to the Congress.

Abstracts can be viewed online at Annals of Oncology at

Keynote Speakers Share Provocative Insights

The Congress featured six keynote lectures by world leaders in the field sharing their wide-ranging insights into a variety of topics, including:

  • Jeroen Raes, MD (University Hospital Gastuisberg) on the role of the gut microbiome in cancer susceptibility
  • Aurelien Marabelle, MD (Institut Gustave Roussy) on the new paradigm shift to targeted immune therapies
  • Alexander Eniu, MD, PhD (Oncology Institute “Ion Chiricuta”, Romania) and Paul Cornes, MD’s (University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust) on health economics and cost
  • Adam Bass, MD (Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School) on unraveling the taxonomy in gastric cancer
  • Scott Kopetz, MD, PhD, FACP (MD Anderson Cancer Center) on the BRAF pathway in colorectal cancer
  • Philippe Rouanet, MD (Institut du Cancer de Montpellier) on the reality of robotic surgery in GI cancer

Leading Pharmaceutical Companies Show Strong Support

This year’s Congress had strong industry support from more than 40 leading pharmaceutical companies via independent educational grants and a robust exhibit hall. “The Congress’s presence in the gastrointestinal cancer community speaks highly to both attendees and supporters”, said Andrew Schutt, President and CFO of Imedex, LLC, the organizer and accredited provider for the Congress. “We are very proud of our partnership with ESMO and the Congress Chairmen (Drs. Mario Dicato, Eric Van Cutsem, and Josep Tabernero) in bringing this truly international Congress to the gastrointestinal cancer community.”

Looking Toward the Future

Once again, the 2017 Congress will be organized and certified for continuing education credit by Imedex in partnership with European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), and abstracts will be accepted. ESMO 19th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer takes place 28 June - 1 July 2017 at the Centre de Convencions Internacional de Barcelona (CCIB) in Barcelona, Spain. Visit for more information.


About Imedex
Imedex is the industry leader in developing and delivering independent, accredited health care education. The Company’s programs, specializing in oncology, hematology, and gastroenterology, are provided through live events around the world, as well as effective online educational opportunities for on the go healthcare providers.

Imedex’s high quality scientific programming translates the latest research into clinically-relevant information. Our activities address the needs of healthcare professionals inundated by information through exceptional organization and outstanding educational value, with a proven sustained impact on patient care.

Imedex provides over 50,000 e-learning experiences annually and its live conferences have interfaced with more than 100,000 attendees since 2001. The Company has a global footprint and operates in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

At Imedex, education is the best medicine®. For more information on Imedex and upcoming conferences, visit us online at or on our e-learning center at or via email at registration(at)imedex(dot)com

Save the date for next year’s event:
ESMO 19th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer
28 June - 1 July 2017
Barcelona, Spain

Other upcoming Imedex events:
Lymphoma & Myeloma 2016: An International Congress on Hematologic Malignancies
13-15 October, 2016; New York, New York

21st Annual Perspectives on Thoracic Oncology
18-19 November, 2016; New York, New York

Advances in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America’s Clinical & Research Conference
8-10 December, 2016; Orlando, Florida

About ESMO, European Society for Medical Oncology
ESMO is the leading European professional organization for medical oncology. Comprising more than 13,000 oncology professionals from over 130 countries, we are the society of reference for oncology education and information. We are committed to supporting our members to develop and advance in a fast-evolving professional environment.

Founded in 1975, ESMO has European roots and a global reach: we welcome oncology professionals from around the world. We are a home for all oncology stakeholders, connecting professionals with diverse expertise and experience. Our educational and information resources support an integrated, multi-professional approach to cancer treatment. We seek to erase boundaries in cancer care as we pursue our mission across oncology, worldwide.

About the Congress Chairs
Mario Dicato, MD
Congress Chair
Head of Internal Medicine and the Division of Hematology and Oncology
Luxembourg Medical Center
Head, Research Laboratory
Luxembourg Foundation for Research on Cancer and Blood Diseases
Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Eric Van Cutsem, MD, PhD
Congress Chair
Professor of Internal Medicine
University of Leuven
Head, Digestive Oncology Unit
University Hospital Gasthuisberg
Leuven, Belgium

Josep Tabernero, MD, PhD
Congress Vice Chair
ESMO President-elect
Head, Medical Oncology Department
Vall d’Hebron University Hospital
Director of the Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology
Barcelona, Spain

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