APCCC 2024: Bridging Clinical Gaps in Prostate Cancer Care - Silke Gillessen

February 21, 2024

Silke Gillessen discusses upcoming APCCC 2024 and delves into how the conference will tackle crucial topics from GU ASCO 2024, highlighting the dynamic field of prostate cancer treatment. Dr. Gillessen mentions the incorporation of new data, such as the findings from Dr. Maha Hussain's BRCAAWAY presentation, into the APCCC's already prepared questions. These discussions aim to address clinical practice challenges, especially concerning combination therapies and the management of early progressors after triplet therapy. Dr. Gillessen emphasizes the importance of terminology in patient communication and announces that the conference, taking place from April 25th to 27th in Lugano, will be a hybrid event, welcoming both in-person and virtual attendees.


Silke Gillessen, MD, Medical Oncologist, Medical and Scientific Director, L'Istituto Oncologico della Svizzera Italiana (IOSI), Bellinzona, Switzerland

Alicia Morgans, MD, MPH, Genitourinary Medical Oncologist, Medical Director of Survivorship Program at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA

Read the Full Video Transcript

Alicia Morgans: Hi, I am so excited to be here with Professor Silke Gillessen, who is joining me from the Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland to talk about the APCCC 2024. Thank you so much for being here.

Silke Gillessen: Thanks, Alicia. As always, a pleasure.

Alicia Morgans: It is always a pleasure to talk to you too. And we recently completed GU ASCO 2024, and I know that the APCCC is going to be taking on some of the wonderful presentations and topics that were considered at that meeting. Can you tell me a little bit about what we're digging into in the questions that might have been discussed at GU ASCO 24?

Silke Gillessen: Yes. As you know, we have already prepared all the questions, and we have included all the comments from our panelists. So it was quite some work last weekend before ASCO GU. And now with ASCO GU now, I was already seeing, oh wow. There is something else that we have to include. I think Maha Hussain's presentation about the BRCAAWAY was very interesting. So giving us more data for the decision who to give the combination, who not to give the combination. And we have quite some questions about that, especially also should you now, because most of our patients receive RP already in the hormone-sensitive state. Switch the RP? Stop the RP? Continue the RP? So I think it's a lot of these questions that we are going to have.

And poor Aurelius, he's in Switzerland and I'm writing him all presentations long. "Oh, maybe we should change that. We have to add that." And I think, so that was really very stimulating to be here. Also, the session about the early progressors after triplet therapy, we have quite some questions on that topic as well. So yeah, I think the questions are quite spot on. So I met a lot of people and everyone was like, yes, very. I mean, these are the questions that we have in clinical practice every day.

Alicia Morgans: Wonderful. And I think what's so important about the APCCC is that it really tackles areas where we don't have the details on the exact patient that we see in clinic, but we need to extrapolate the data to understand how we care for that patient. And the consensus that comes, or the lack of consensus that comes from APCCC, is really useful as we're making those considerations in our clinic.

Silke Gillessen: Absolutely. And I always think, especially where we don't have consensus, that may be really the areas where we should do research. Of course, in some of these areas, there are already studies ongoing. Others, you probably will never be able to do a study. But then, there will be also some of the topics where we would say yes, maybe it's worth it for the academic groups to take that as a question to answer in a clinical trial.

Alicia Morgans: Absolutely. And it's also wonderful to just think about where we can educate ourselves as a community. Because in some areas, we do have pretty clear data, or relatively clear data, but we don't actually have uptake of that data. Or there are barriers to the ways that we utilize that data in clinic. And so, also kind of reflecting on ourselves and understanding, well, despite this data, part of our community still does not agree, so there must be some more information we need. There must be some more education, or there must be something else going on here.

Silke Gillessen: Yeah. I totally agree. I mean, that's very interesting. We had this morning a meeting to understand why combination therapies are not taken up so much with PCFM in the community. And maybe we were also thinking part of it is also semantic, in that "dose intensification" may not be the right word to use. Because in reality, it's more of a combination treatment, and it's not intensification any longer, because it's standard of care now to give combination therapy. So I guess I'm going to also add in some questions about terminology. That seems to me quite important as well. Maybe to, when you speak to patients, the word "intensification" doesn't sound really good.

Alicia Morgans: Absolutely. For those people who are interested, and I know there are many, how can they attend? Does everyone have to be there in person, or is there a virtual option this year?

Silke Gillessen: It's again a hybrid event, so you can do both. Of course, we like people to be in Lugano, because it's nice for networking and for everything. But we have also the version of virtual participation, and until the 22nd of February, we have the early bird discount.

Alicia Morgans: Yes.

Silke Gillessen: So I guess that would be a really good thing to do the registration now. Everyone can come. So I hear sometimes, "Oh, I think it's only for..." Today, like an hour ago, someone said, "Oh, I thought it's only by invitation." No, everyone who's interested in the optimal management of patients with prostate cancer can really come and register at the website www.apccc.org.

Alicia Morgans: It's wonderful. So I do want to emphasize that Lugano is one of the most beautiful places I've ever visited on the planet. It is wonderful. But the other thing that I love is the camaraderie, collegiality, and just the general feeling of the presentations. These are presentations that are addressing many of the questions and the topics that we end up discussing in our questions. And it's really the experts in the field trying to bring together the confluence of data to help inform us as we answer those questions. So many more questions are raised. So many wonderful conversations are had. And we really get to the sense of what it is to care for these patients. And it is just a delightful environment. So I could not encourage people more to come to this conference and really engage. And this is in April, correct?

Silke Gillessen: Yes, exactly. It's the end of April, 25th to 27th is the original APCCC with all the discussions. As you said, the presentations where experts really say what they do in daily clinical practice. And then, a new feature that we have on the 24th, so the Wednesday before, we have a translational symposium for everyone whose interest is also in translational research in prostate cancer.

Alicia Morgans: Wonderful. Well, I am so excited for this to happen. And I could not emphasize more that it is one of the most collegial, engaging conferences that we do have, really getting to the bottom of what it is to practice prostate cancer clinical care today. So thank you so much for your time. And please join us in Lugano.