Greeting from the President

October 2020

Hideyuki SAYA, M.D., Ph.D.

Hideyuki SAYA, M.D., Ph.D.

President, The 80th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Cancer Association

Professor, Division of Gene Regulation, Institute for Advanced Medical Research,

Graduate School of Medicine, Keio University

I am pleased to announce that the 80th Annual Meeting of the Japanese Cancer Association will be held at Pacifico Yokohama for three days from September 30 (Thursday) to October 2 (Saturday), 2021. First held in Osaka in 1941, the annual meeting has been convened continuously for these 80 years, except when forced to cancel because of World War II. The forthcoming commemorative 80th Annual Meeting will be held on the theme, “Bringing hope for future cancer eradication, building on the past 80 years.” Cutting-edge knowledge and technologies are expected to bring dramatic progress in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer, and are built upon the efforts and achievements of our predecessors. In the forthcoming meeting, therefore, we will look back on the wealth of such accumulated knowledge with gratitude and discuss new strategies to eradicate cancer by applying innovative technologies to overcome the difficulties faced by our predecessors.

The key mission of the Japanese Cancer Association is to win the battle against cancer through basic research. However, there is an obstacle to translating discoveries from basic research to clinical application, known as “the Valley of Death,” and many cancer researchers have been disheartened by the depth of that valley. On the other hand, interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers in various rapidly-evolving fields has given rise to new scientific fields of study, and has had a tangible impact on the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. The involvement of specialists in a diverse range of studies, encompassing natural, human and social sciences, helps to overcome this obstacle in terms of both time and space, and drive the integration of basic research and clinical application. The development of innovative diagnosis and treatment methods requires collaboration across different disciplines, fields and professions, and such interdisciplinary efforts may enable some small discovery to suddenly win the battle against cancer.

The 80th Annual Meeting will be organized as an experimental forum where specialists in various fields, including corporate people, are brought together with the mission of eradicating cancer, and exploring how research ideals and hypotheses can be turned into reality. We thus hope to build a basis for organic partnerships among academia, industry and society to enable stakeholders with diverse backgrounds to think and work together. In addition, we will organize the meeting in a manner that captures the interest of young researchers and students, who will be the next generation of oncology leaders, and makes them want to participate. We will also build on the globalization efforts of preceding meetings to present a new form of globalization at the meeting.

Although the state of the Covid-19 pandemic by the time of the annual meeting is unclear, we hope to welcome you in person in Yokohama. We very much look forward to your participation and highly appreciate your valuable contribution to the presentations and discussions.