Highlights of the UKINETS Annual Conference

The Conference this year had a real focus on practical management of patients in the NET clinic; the morning updated delegates on the current guidelines (with cases to highlight salient issues) covering pancreatic, intestinal and lung NETs as well as a detailed session dedicated to paragangliomas and phaeochromocytomas.

A highlight of the day was undoubtedly the debate where three previous UKINETS Chairmen (Professors Reed [Oncology], Caplin [Gastroenterology] and Grossman [Endocrinology]) debated the relative merits of who should be in charge of managing NET patients. Whilst they passionately advocated the strengths of their respective specialties (holistic care throughout cancer journey, diagnostic/endoscopic prowess, and “academic thoughtfulness”, respectively) all agreed that patients are best served by multidisciplinary teams, including surgeons (with a nod to Prof Poston!).

In the translational science session the recipient of the 2015 UKINETS/NET Patient Foundation grant (Dr Barriuso) presented whole exome sequencing results from exceptional pancreatic NET responders and non-responders to targeted therapies, before a detailed review of immunotherapy in solid tumours from Prof Ottensmeier (an issue which is very topical in 2016 amongst clinicians and patients) and a glimpse of future NET therapies from Prof Thakker. The meeting was truly multi-disciplinary, educational and provided great networking opportunities. I look forward to the 2017 meeting.

Prof Juan Valle