New Zealand Society for Oncology Conference 2019 was held in Wellington 25-26th October.  It was another fantastic opportunity to connect with other researchers/clinicians both from NZ and overseas, allowing us to catch up on research progress from other groups as well as presenting some of our own findings.


The NETwork! group was well represented this year, with three oral presentations and two posters:

Cherie Blenkiron (Senior Research Fellow) gave a talk titled “A spatial proteomics approach to understanding the immune microenvironment in merkel cell carcinoma” during the immunotherapy session.

Kimiora Henare (Research Fellow, our close collaborator who developed the Huarahi Tika framework to guide our project – Māori engagement roadmap) – was on the expert panel during a session on equity, and also presented a talk titled “Mapping a route to Māori engagement for clinical cancer genomics”.

Tamsin Robb (PhD student) delivered an excellent presentation “Tumour evolution through time and space: a genomic journey” as part of the PHARMAC emerging researcher award session.  She also presented a poster “Tumour Evolution in Augmented Reality: Understanding Genomic Complexity” which included a demonstration of the augmented reality model created in a recently completed pilot.

Braden Woodhouse (Data Manager) presented a poster describing our recent work completed in collaboration with CommNETs “Consensus-derived quality performance indicators for neuroendocrine tumour care”.  We hope that these indicators will be used to monitor and improve care for people with NETs in NZ.

In addition, Dr Ben Lawrence (Principle Investigator) chaired an excellent session on Translational Research.


Sandra Fitzgerald (PhD student) also won an award for her poster “Real World Applications of Liquid Biopsy in Melanoma” and although this particular work was not directly related to NETs, she is a key part of our team. Great work Sandra!


Dr Ben Lawrence and Tamsin Robb using Hololens and augmented reality to discuss tumour evolution with conference delegates.