Pink October BIG-EORTC webinar 2023


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The month of October is International Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

On Tuesday 10 October 2023 from 13:00 to 14:00 CEST, the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer – Breast Cancer Group (EORTC BCG) and the Breast International Group (BIG), both not-for-profit cancer research organisations, are organising a free one-hour webinar for anyone interested in understanding how breast cancer research is financed and the related challenges.

It’s crucial to recognise that research not only saves lives but is also extremely expensive. Obtaining necessary funding has become progressively challenging and poses a significant obstacle for academic organisations conducting research. At EORTC and BIG, we are committed to intensifying efforts to raise funds to facilitate international breast cancer studies without commercial interest. This funding is critical and covers the A to Z of running a study – from setting it up to enrolling the number of patients needed and ensuring adequate follow-up. All of these are essential for generating robust data and results, and for addressing important questions that matter to patients facing the disease.

The theme “Overcoming the challenges of funding academic breast cancer research” will highlight various issues, including the drivers of clinical trial costs, hurdles in securing funding, and the need for significant change in this regard. We will offer insights from different stakeholders and explore potential solutions.
Registration is mandatory and will close on 9 October 2023.


Based on their expertise and understanding of this topic, we have invited the following key speakers:

David CameronDavid Cameron, MD, PhD – BIG Chair and professor of Oncology at Edinburgh University, UK. Works at the National Health Service (NHS) Lothian’s cancer centre treating breast cancer patients. He is the joint lead for the Edinburgh Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre. He also holds a part-time deputy director role in the Scottish Government-funded Innovative Health Care Delivery Programme (IHDP). This programme aims to improve access to and the use of routine cancer patient data within NHS Scotland.

Vassilis GolfinopoulosVassilis Golfinopoulos, MD, PhD – EORTC Headquarters Director, Brussels, Belgium. Oversees the performance and sustainability of the clinical research infrastructure of EORTC. He advises and carries out the scientific and operational strategy of the organisation by leading the scientific, operational, and project management activities of EORTC Headquarters.

Theodora GouliotiTheodora Goulioti, MD –BIG Headquarters CEO, Brussels, Belgium. In partnership with the BIG Executive Board, she is responsible for overseeing the successful execution of BIG’s strategy as a research association, in particular from the day-to-day management perspective. Leads the BIG HQ team, consisting of about 45 passionate and committed people who work on behalf of BIG’s Executive Board and BIG’s General Assembly. BIG Against Breast Cancer, BIG’s dedicated philanthropy unit within BIG HQ, conducts vital fundraising to support BIG’s clinical trials and research programmes without commercial interest.

Ines Vaz Luis, MD, PhD – Member of BIG’s Executive Board. Medical oncologist at the Institut Gustave Roussy, Paris, France, and patient-oriented clinical researcher. Leads an innovative research group focusing on survivorship in both clinical practice and research. Her research and group are fully and independently financed by public, private, and philanthropic entities.

Breast Cancer Facts and Figures

Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in women, representing 1 in 4 cancer cases diagnosed in women globally. Since 2020, it has become the most commonly diagnosed type of cancer overall, surpassing the incidence of lung cancer.
Each year, ± 2.3 million people worldwide are diagnosed with breast cancer. Belgium has the highest incidence, with 11,319 women and 113 men diagnosed in 2021.
Over the course of their lifetime, about 1 in 8 women and 1 in 800 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Although it is a rare disease in men, accounting for around 1% of new breast cancer cases diagnosed each year, incidence amongst men has increased over time.

Sources: Globocan Report (Dec. 2020), Belgian Cancer Registry 2021

EORTC and BIG Collaboration

This session is organised by two international not-for-profit organisations based in Brussels:

The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) is Europe’s leading multidisciplinary clinical cancer research organisation, which unites research experts worldwide to define better treatments for cancer patients and improve their survival and quality of life.

The Breast International Group (BIG) is an international not-for-profit organisation that represents the largest global network of academic research groups dedicated to finding better treatments and cures for breast cancer.

Co-Funded by the European Union Logo

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