Report from attending Japan-US International Sarcoma Workshop

On December 4 and 5, five members including myself from NPO Cure Sarcoma (an organization of adult soft tissue sarcoma patients and families) attended the workshop “The Japan-United States International Workshop on the Sarcoma Research and Therapy” in Honolulu, Hawaii. This workshop acted as a kickoff meeting of the Japanese Sarcoma Association. We were looking forward to attend the conference and hear the expected progress.

It was very refreshing to hear the presentations of familiar Japanese doctors in English. We learned the two new treatments (combination use of pazopanib and denosumab to the bone metastasis of soft tissue sarcomas, and cryosurgery) for the first time at this conference.

The presentation from Dr. Brohl about genome analysis on Ewing sarcoma was very difficult. We found some differences between Japan and US during the conference. For example, there are more liposarcoma patients than leiomyosarcoma patients in the US. Ion beam radiotherapy is in more advanced use in Japan.

Dr. Takahashi’s group had more patient cases in their presentations because the sarcoma patients came mostly to this group for help. We felt that the Japanese treatment results in surgery, local treatment, and the use of pazopanib were equal to those of US results. We got an impression that the US treatment methods did not differ a lot, but there were more clinical trials conducted in the US in chemotherapy area.

We eagerly hope that a deep international discussion on sarcoma study and treatment will be done and the best standard treatment method will soon be established for sarcoma patients. We NPO Cure Sarcoma will try our best to support the development of sarcoma treatments.

December 21, 2014 NPO Cure Sarcoma Hiroyuki Onishi, Chairman of the Board of Trustees