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27 May 2022
  • VCCC Alliance
VCCC Alliance Melanoma Symposium | In-person | 2.30pm-5.30pm

Targeting the microbiome in patients with melanoma – ready for prime time?

VCCC Alliance Melanoma Symposium sponsored by Novartis

A/Prof David Gyorki (VCCC Alliance Research & Education Lead for Melanoma and Skin Cancers) will be joined by a multidisciplinary panel of experts for an insightful look into the role the gut microbiome plays in disease, and how the composition of the microbiome can impact the outcomes of immunotherapy in melanoma patients.

This special event aims to bring together a community of practice to explore a way forward for the translation of research into clinic for interventions targeting the microbiome in melanoma patients undergoing immunotherapy.

The gut microbiome

The gut microbiome has been shown to play a significant role in a multitude of human diseases and has become a focus of cancer research over the past five years. There is now strong evidence emerging that suggests that the composition of the gut microbiome impacts outcomes of patients with melanoma treated with immunotherapy.

Studies have shown that distinct groups of bacteria were elevated in patients that responded to immunotherapy and were different to those elevated in patients who did not respond.

A variety of approaches are currently being explored to test whether it is possible to improve responsiveness to immunotherapies by altering the microbiome, including Faecal Microbiota Transplants (FMTs), giving patients more defined groups of bacteria or a single species, and dietary changes.

This symposium will present the current evidence base and explore available and emerging interventions looking at ways of bringing research to practice.

  • Review the emerging research on the important relationship between the microbiome and response to immunotherapy, and provide awareness of how the microbiome can specifically influence the outcome of melanoma immunotherapy
  • Explain the interventions that can alter the microbiome and potentially alter response to immunotherapy with implications for translation into practice
  • Foster collaboration that will enable further research activities in this area, as well as help develop a framework for a prospective interventional study

A/Prof David Gyorki
Research & Education Lead for Melanoma and Skin Cancers, VCCC Alliance; Surgical Oncologist, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre; Principal Fellow, Department of Surgery, University of Melbourne


Prof Jonathon Cebon
Former Medical Director, and Head of Cancer Immunobiology Program, Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute
Former Medical Oncologist, and Medical Director of Cancer Services, Austin Health


Prof Sammy Bedoui
NHMRC L2 Investigator, and Theme Leader Immunology, Doherty Institute for Infection and Immmunity
Director of Research, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Melbourne

Dr Miles Andrews, Monash University
Medical Oncologist, The Alfred
NHMRC Early Career Fellow, Monash University

A/Prof Shahneen Sandhu
Medical Oncologist, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
Clinician Researcher - Melanoma and Uro-oncology Units, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

Rose Rocca
Senior Clinical Dietician, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

Dr Emily Wright
Gastroenterologist, St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne

Melissa Sheldon
VCCC Alliance Cancer Consumer representative

Friday 27 May 2022

2.30pm - 4.30pm presentations
4.30pm - 5.30pm networking and discussions

Please join waiting list to be notified of any vacancies. 

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For further information please contact Dr Vino Pillay, Program Manager - Distributed Leadership, VCCC Alliance vpillay@unimelb.edu.au

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