Kirsten Sundby Hall MD, PhD
2020 President of CTOS
CTOS (Connective Tissue Oncology Society) is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2020.
The first CTOS meeting was held in Boston in 1995. The intention was to create multidisciplinary cooperation between physicians and scientists with a primary interest in connective tissue tumors. The goal was to increase our knowledge of all aspects of treatment and research of these tumors.
It is worth remembering that CTOS was in fact established after an initiative of a patient suffering from sarcoma. It was felt that the various experts and specialties involved in the treatment were not sufficiently coordinated, and there was a need for better communication between specialists for optimal patient care. Consequently, a multidisciplinary meeting was held in Boca Raton in 1993 to discuss the state of knowledge. First among others professor Herman Suit saw the importance of such multidisciplinary cooperation, and he was a driving force behind the process leading up to the founding of CTOS. Today CTOS is an organization of more than 900 members representing over 44 countries.
The main event of CTOS is the annual meeting where the participants number has grown to about 1300 attendees. Most participants are medical oncologists, but we should keep in mind that CTOS is a multidisciplinary organization and our program is designed accordingly. Our vision is to be a society uniting all sarcoma disciplines including basic science.
The CTOS meeting is an important arena for young physicians and researchers. A mentoring program was implemented in 2019 and will continue at the 2020 meeting. Other important objectives for our meeting are knowledge transfer and networking activities that may add importantly to young researchers’ professional development.
Since 2015 the International Sarcoma Nurse and Allied Health Professionals group (iSNAP) has arranged a yearly meeting in conjunction with CTOS. This yearly event has provided nurses and allied health professions the opportunity to meet, collaborate and network with others in similar fields while attending the CTOS meeting. CTOS will continue to support this event.
I see a bright future for CTOS - the organization may well progress in both membership and scientific standing. The program for the 25 years anniversary meeting will be exciting and our anniversary will be celebrated in various ways. You are therefore heartily welcome to Boca Raton in Florida Nov 18-21, 2020, the location at which the vision of CTOS was first formulated!