TAT 2017 was the fifteenth conference in the annual meeting series on Targeted Anticancer Therapies (TAT) in the early phases of clinical development. It was held in Paris on March 6-8, 2017, and was hosted by Gustave Roussy, one of the world’s leading cancer institutes. Professor Jean-Charles Soria, head of the phase 1 program at Gustave Roussy, served as the president of the meeting, which was attended by about 400 delegates from over 30 countries in Europe, North America, and Asia. They were offered 50 lectures distributed over 12 plenary sessions in 3 days.
The scientific program paid ample attention to immunological targets and immunotherapy of cancer. A definite highlight of the IO section of the agenda was the TAT 2017 Honorary Award Lecture, presented by dr. Jedd Wolchok (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center) who was a leading investigator in the evaluation of immune checkpoint inhibitors in melanoma.
The Keynote Lecture, presented by dr. Alexander Eggermont (Gustave Roussy), provided a broad picture of the IO revolution, which is ongoing and has already changed current practice in melanoma and non-small cell lung cancer, while other tumor types are likely to follow shortly.
Three plenary sessions (sessions 1, 2 and 5) were devoted to immune-oncology (IO). Many of the presentations in these sessions focused on combinations of checkpoint inhibitors with each other and with other types of agents as well as on new immune targets beyond CTLA-4 and PD1/PD-L1 checkpoint inhibition. Many new IO-targeting agents are currently undergoing evaluation in early clinical trials, either as single agents or in combination with “classical” checkpoint inhibition.
Broad range of drug and targets covered
In addition to IO targets, a range of other promising drugs/targets and technologies were reviewed, for instance: cell cycle targets (session 6), targeted drug delivery (session 7), targeting cancer metabolism (session 9), DNA-targeted therapies (session 11) and new targets in the androgen receptor pathway (session 12). As usual during TAT meetings, there were sessions devoted to “Phase 1 studies, completed or in progress, of miscellaneous agents” (session 3) and “Early-phase drug development in hematology”(session 4). The program was complemented by about 50 posters on a range of topics related to drug discovery and development, new molecular targets and biomarker identification.
Abstracts and presentations available
The next meeting in this series wil be held in Paris in March 2018. TAT 2018 will be organized by ESMO, the European Society of Medical Oncology.