VCS goes virtual again this November!

Dear VCS members and the Veterinary Oncology Community,

Here we are again one year later! Due to the continued spread of Covid-19, and the utmost concern for the health and safety of our speakers, attendees, staff, and communities, VCS has decided to hold the 2021 Annual Conference virtually. I know we were all hoping to connect face to face, and I was very much looking forward to showing our group the incredible city of Boise. However, VCS remains deeply committed to deliver a high level of education as well as spotlight innovation until we can meet again in person.

We are excited to have three keynote speakers this year. Dr. Joshua Schiffman, MD, MSCI will be discussing the role of p53 in cancer resistance in elephants, and how learning about this resistance is leading to new treatments for dogs and humans. Dr. Schiffman is a pediatric hematologist-oncologist at Primary Children’s Hospital (PCH) and Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah. He attended Brown University School of Medicine, followed by a pediatric residency at Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed his fellowship training in Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at Stanford University. While at Stanford, he began their Pediatric Cancer Genetics Program. Most recently, Dr. Schiffman has been using the power of comparative oncology to advance the field of cancer research.

Dr. Karin Sorenmo and Dr. Sue Volk will be giving a collaborative talk discussing the research obtained from the Penn Vet’s Shelter Canine Mammary Tumor Program at the University of Pennsylvania and how this integrates with Dr. Volk’s basic science research with mammary carcinoma cells and their surrounding extracellular matrix. Dr. Sorenmo, DVM, DACVIM serves as an Emeritus Professor of Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. During her final years there, she focused on breast carcinogenesis and spontaneous mammary tumors in companion animals. She has recently established a research team of basic scientists (including Dr. Volk), and is restarting a new non-profit program called Lesley’s Place to continue this research while saving homeless dogs with mammary tumors. Dr. Volk B.A., V.M.D., Ph.D., DACVS is an Associate Professor of Small Animal Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. Her laboratory is focused on wound healing, with a complimentary basic research program focused on the role of the extracellular matrix and adult stem cells. Dr. Volk was recently the recipient of a prestigious Inventor of the Year award from the Penn Center of Innovation for her approach to reduce breast cancer recurrence.

This year, the online conference format is filled with a combination of lectures, abstracts, and engaging sessions. This content will be available live online during the conference dates (November 4-6th) and on demand on our new learning platform well into the future. The Resident Review Workshop will be held Thursday morning, followed by our first keynote address and then abstract presentations. Concurrent specialty sessions will be presented throughout Friday and Saturday, and the second keynote address will be taking place Saturday morning.  There is a full three days of technician sessions as well so there is something for everyone to look forward to.  The conference schedule will be updated regularly online.

We look forward to your continued participation in advancing excellence the field of veterinary oncology and can’t wait to see you in November!

Dr. Carrie Hume

2021 Program Chair