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Infectious Agents and Cancer Journal

AORTIC is affiliated with Infectious Agents and Cancer, an open access, peer-reviewed, online journal published by BMC, that encompasses all aspects of basic, clinical, epidemiological and translational research providing an insight into the association between chronic infections and cancer.

The journal welcomes submissions in the pathogen-related cancer areas and other related topics pertinent to the development of preventive strategies, innovative diagnostic and biomolecular methodologies and promising therapeutic strategies for chronic infections and cancer. Of particular interest are HPV and anogenital cancers (as well as head and neck cancers), EBV and Burkitt lymphoma, HCV/HBV and hepatocellular carcinoma (as well as lymphoproliferative diseases), HHV8 and Kaposi sarcoma, HTLV and leukemia and Cancers in Low- and Middle-income countries.

All members of AORTIC receive a 15% discount on the article-processing charge for each article accepted for publication in Infectious Agents and Cancer (standard waiver rules apply for low-income countries).

Please visit the journal website for further information and to access all articles published to date:

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AORTIC PALOP III Conference: Efficiency & Equity for Universal Health Care Coverage

150 attendees from Brazil, Senegal, Portugal, Cabo Verde, Angola & Mozambique gathered together to discuss the challenges & possible solutions in the PALOP countries.  Patronised by the Honourable Minister of Health, Dr Arlindo de Rosario of Cabo Verde.

Conference focus
III Conference on Cancer in the PALOP Region & 1st Conference on Cancer in Cabo Verde.

Pre-conference on Day 1:
-    Nursing Oncology
-    Breast Cancer 
-    Communication in Emergencies (Target audience: Health Care Workers)

Conference Day 2 & 3:

Confeence:  AORTIC & National conference on Cancer
The ultimate goal to improve the treatment of cancer patients in the PALOP countries.

Post-conference meeting to discuss Training Collaboration in the PALOP Region was held with AORTIC to plan the way forward.

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Sudan 2nd International Conference on Breast Cancer

The conference focused on the discussion of current diagnostic issues and management of breast cancer, including reconstructive surgery.
At the end of the conference a focus group considered and recommended African and country-based guidelines for pathology reporting, data management and care of breast cancer patients.  Participation from AORTIC included, Prof Sulma Mohammed, Prof Olufemi Ogunbiyi, Dr Paul Ndom & Dr Dafalla Abuidris.


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West African College of Surgeons (WACS) 2018

58th Scientific Meeting of WACS. Theme of the Meeting: Global Surgery Implementation for West Africa. Sub Themes: “Health Care Financing Innovations for training and Human Development of Human Resource for Health in West Africa.”
-           Health Care Financing
-           Innovations for training & human development of human resource for health in West Africa

Highlights of the conference were the opening ceremony on the 26th of February during which the President of Gambia, His Excellency Adama Barrow was invested as the grand patron of the 58th Annual conference of WACS and he also declared the conference open.

20th Sir Samuel Manuwa Lecture, titled IN PURSUIT OF JUSTICE AND EQUITY: ROOTING FOR THE HEALTH OF THE POOR was delivered by Emeritus Professor Nimi Briggs on the 27th of Feb. 2018.

AORTIC Representation:

-           Verna Vanderpuye as a WACS fellow presented on Radiation Oncology. Session was well attended and interest from delegates asking relative questions.

-           Chioma Asuzu – AORTIC West Africa Vice-President

Was asked during the conference to speak on Psycho-Oncology.  Chioma presented a talk together on “Psychosocial Challenges of Oncology Patients”.  Session was well received and created a heated debate around communication, death & psycho-social issues.

Belmira Rodrigues – Hosted exhibition booth for AORTIC with Chioma Asuzu assisting as well.

-           Serigne Gueye – In attendance as incoming President for WACS

-           Approximately 700 delegates in attendance

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James F. Holland, M.D

AORTIC is saddened to learn of the passing of one of its Founders, James F. Holland, M.D, on March 22, 2018. Dr James Holland, together with his wife Dr Jimmie Holland, nurtured AORTIC to promote cancer control and palliation in Africa for more than 25 years. He will be sorely missed by AORTIC.

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AORTIC North America Meeting @ AACR

The AORTIC meeting at AACR took place on Sunday April 2nd 2017 between 5:30 to 8:30 at the Washington Marriott at Metro Centre.

The program objective was discuss/propose strategies to overcome the infrastructure and human capacity challenges of conducting basic, translational, and health services research in Africa. Another objective was to provide a networking forum that will connect African investigators with cancer scientists in North America.

Dr. Christopher Williams’ presentation focused on the history of AORTIC and its evolution into the premier organization for cancer in Africa. He provided his thoughts on the future of the organization. An area of debate was whether the organization has the capacity to engage in cancer clinical trials design and conduction and whether its role is primarily in facilitating collaboration in research. The audience also discussed the positive role of the organization in the support and mentorship of young emerging researchers in the continent.

Mr. Mevlin Foote from the Constituency for Africa’s Advocacy for Strengthening Healthcare Infrastructure in Africa discussed the recent launching of the African Centers for Disease Control in Ethiopia. He elaborated on possible strategies to raise the profile of cancer within the African CDC. He also shared his experience in fund raising and the role of the African Diaspora.

Dr. Ahmed Sultan from the University of Alexandra, Egypt discussed the role of African scientists in research training  and South-South collaboration. He emphasized that the continent is capable and ready for relevant and cutting edge basic science research in cancer.

The group also celebrated the African AACR travel awardee. Each presented their award winning research to the group in 5-10minutes. The awardee discussed the challenges and affordances of their research experience as well as their future aspirations.

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AACR-AORTIC Research Workshop

AORTIC and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) partnered to present a Workshop on “Capacity Building for Cancer Research in Africa” in Cape Town, from January 17-18, 2017.

The two organizations joined efforts to present a workshop designed to facilitate improved expertise, resources, and infrastructure that can lead to impactful investigator-initiated cancer research in Africa.

Lectures & roundtable discussions included in the programme were:

  • Basic Research Principles
  • Responsible Conduct of Research
  • Getting Grants
  • Collaboration: Rules of Engagement
  • Biosampling and Biobanking
  • Laboratory Best Practices and Workflow
  • Data Management
  • Best Practices for Data Analysis
  • Research Advocacy: Principles and Practices
  • Research Dissemination

75 delegates attended this highly successful workshop.

The AACR Research conference was held immediately after the 2 day workshop.

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AORTIC Road Map to Cancer control in Africa: Strengthening AORTIC North America. Strengthening Partnership and Collaboration

The AORTIC ASCO 2016 meeting took place on June 4th during the Annual ASCO meeting in Chicago . The meeting was entitled AORTIC Road Map to Cancer control in Africa: Strengthening AORTIC North America. Strengthening Partnership and Collaboration.

The program objectives were to  Discuss/propose strategies to strengthen AORTIC North America and enhance partnerships and collaboration in Research and Education between AORTC and North American Organizations, Clinicians and Researchers. The second objective was to  provide a networking forum that will connect African clinicians and investigators with North American Clinicians and Investigators.

The meeting was very well attended by physicians and researchers from the continent who were attending The ASCO meeting. AORTIC leaders such as Dr. Christopher  Williams, Dr. James F. Holland, Dr. Jimmie Holland, Dr. Funmi Olopade, Dr. N.A.Othieno-Abinya and Dr. Ahmed Elzawawy were also in attendance as well as Dr. Paul Ruff and Dr. Linus Chung from ASCO International. The meeting was moderated by Dr. Nazik Hammad, AORTIC North America VP who together with the audience discussed the role of AORTIC and strategies for strengthening collaboration and partnerships.

Dr. James F. Holland and Dr. Jimmie Holland provided the opening remarks and discussed AORTCI history, mission and its current momentum. Dr. Williams discussed the history of AORTIC North America, its website and possible future directions.

Dr. Abinya discussed the status of cancer control in Kenya. He gave a comprehensive review of the current situation in terms of public and private endeavors and the role of different stakeholders. This generated a lively discussion of the strengths and weakness of cancer control programs in Sub-Saharan Africa in general and the challenges facing capacity building efforts.

Dr. Ruff described some of ASCO initiatives in Africa such as International Development and Education Award (IDEA) and International Innovation Grants and discussed avenues for improving the collaboration between ASCO and AORTIC.

Dr. Elzawawy shared the vision of Harvard Global Health Catalyst Win-Win Initiative which is to foster scientific approaches and collaboration to reduce the cost of cancer therapies and increase cost effectiveness and affordability of cancer treatment for in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMIC). He discussed that some of these approaches could offer reasonable solutions for acceptable treatment for underserved cancer patients in the high income countries too.

The bulk of the meeting was devoted to the discussion related to optimizing research and training partnerships with ASCO and other organizations. Dr. Funmi Olopade emphasized the role of young African researchers in leading the future of cancer control in Africa. Some of the young researchers present at the meeting briefed the audience of their ongoing research and their collaborations with other researchers in and outside Africa.

The meeting ended with a discussion on how to improve such gatherings in the future to ensure that African attendees of ASCO annual meeting get the maximum benefit of the meeting in terms of enhancing networking and collaboration.

MADCaP The Men of African Descent and Carcinoma of the Prostate Consortium

Prostate cancer is most common in black men. Prof Chinegwundoh, explains (Part filmed during @AORTIC_AFRICA Nigeria)

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AORTIC PALOP Conference in Maputo, Mozambique

Saw 150 delegates from the PALOP (Portuguese speaking countries in Africa) meet to discuss “Cancer as a public health problem in Mozambique – should it be prioritized” including international speakers from UK, Brazil & North America. This meeting was a collaboration between & supported by AORTIC & the Mozambican Ministry of Health.

This meeting brought to the fore what treatment exists, rather than optimal treatment, for the cancer patient & solutions, including support from the Government, can make a change in the lives of the cancer patient.

PALOP conferences takes place every 2 years. Watch this space for where & when the next PALOP conference will be happening!

PALOP Region: Mozambique, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Cape Verde Islands, Principe & Sao Tome Islands.

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AORTIC North America Meeting @ AACR

The AORTIC AACR 2016 meeting took place on April 16th, 2016 in New Orleans during the Annual AACR meeting. The meeting was entitled “Overcoming Cancer Research Challenges in Africa: New Realities, New Vision”. The program objectives were to discuss/propose strategies to overcome the infrastructure and human capacity challenges of conducting basic, translational, and health services research in Africa. The second objective was to provide a networking forum that will connect African investigators with cancer scientists in North America.

The meeting was very well attended by AORTIC members including AORTIC leaders such as Dr. Christopher Williams, Dr. James F. Holland, Dr. Funmi Olopade and Dr. Sulma Mohammed, Dr. Frédéric Biemar AACR, NCI representatives, and African researchers.

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