May 10, 2012
DAY 2: Started off with buffet style continental breakfast, with an assortment of fresh and dried fruits, bran and exotic non sugary syrups to go with our tea or coffee options (leading by example, healthy diet reduces cancer risk). Several Plenary sessions were scheduled and focussed on primary prevention and prevention of metastasis, where we learned about high potential concepts that maybe ready for trials.
8:15am: Research updates on PRIMARY PREVENTION. Paul Ewald, Phd, University of Louisville spoke on the Evolution and understanding breast cancer, a very insightful presentation on the role of infection, especially viruses, on carcinogenesis and mutation. Other innovative concepts discussed were vaccines, lifestyle (like considering prevention from early childhood, a life course approach).
9:35a.m: PREVENTION OF METASTASIS. Most breast cancer deaths are due to metastases and progress on challenging metastases has been slow and frustrating. This was a unanimous observation of all the speakers and couldn’t emphasize more on the importance of the prevention to achieve the 2020 goal. Ann Chambers, PhD, University of Ontario broke down the phenomenon into: Metastasis (verb) a process (spread) and metastases (noun) a product of the process (secondary tumour). It was highlighted that healthy bone reduces the risk of bone metastasis. Research should focus on preventing the seed (primary tumour cells) from growing in the soil (bone). Yibin Kang, PhD, Princeton University enlightened the attendees on this concept and his ongoing work in this field. Healthy bones could be achieved by healthy diet, physical exercise, Vitamin D.
11:00a.m-3:45pm: Advocates dispersed to their various workshop sessions. Do not be alarmed there was a 2hr break for the annual membership meeting luncheon. Workshop topics included Breast cancer in developing versus developed countries: Is there a difference, Breast cancer is not one disease, Nuts and Bolts of congress, System change theory, Going social to end breast cancer, Obesity, energy balance and breast cancer risk, The environment and breast cancer: what is the latest evidence for a link?
4:00pm: A less scientific and more relaxing plenary session. “What can the breast cancer movement learn from other social change movement?” We heard about other social change movement to learn about their up and downsides and how to adapt that to the 2020 deadline. The Tea party movement, KONY 2012, Social media among others were examined.