Founded in 2011 by Dr Paul Donnellan, Consultant Medical Oncologist at Galway University Hospital, the Irish Melanoma Forum (IMF) aims to:
Raise awareness of malignant melanoma in Ireland
Educate the public regarding prevention, early detection and treatment
Foster collaboration between health care professionals and researchers
Advocate on behalf of patients so that all can receive optimal treatment
The IMF is an inclusive organisation which welcomes new members from healthcare, allied professions and the general public.
In 2011 Dr Donnellan solicited support from industry and colleagues to assemble the first IMF scientific committee which comprised:
- Dr. Paul Donnellan, Galway University Hospital
- Dr. Oscar Breathnach, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin
- Dr. David Gallagher, Mater Private Hospital, Dublin
- Dr. Pat Ormond, St. James’s Hospital, Dublin
- Dr. Derek Power, Cork University Hospital
- Professor Paul Redmond, Cork University Hospital
- Mr. Padraic Regan, Galway University Hospital
- Dr. Cormac Small, Galway University Hospital
- Dr. Jenny Westrup, Beacon Hospital, Dublin
- Professor John Crown, St. Vincent’s University Hospital, Dublin
In November 2011, the IMF had its first Annual Scientific Meeting at Herbert Park Hotel, Dublin with a host of home-grown and international talent participating. Topics covered included: origins of melanoma, epidemiology, pathology, standard treatment options, status of adjuvant therapy and the very latest evidence supporting the use of newer agents such as Ipilimumab and BRAF inhibitors. A full report of hot spots of active clinical research in melanoma research around Ireland was also delivered. For a review of the first IMF Annual Scientific Day see: (insert hyperlink here to page on www.irishmelanomaforum.com)
2012 has already proved to be a most significant year for the IMF with the arrival Ipilimumab: the first drug ever shown conclusively to improve overall survival for patients with metastatic melanoma. This drug is currently being tested in patients at risk of microscopic spread to see if it can improve cure rates versus surgery alone. An application for approval of another new drug in the treatment of metastatic malignant melanoma–a BRAF inhibitor called vemurafenib–has recently been submitted to the NCCP. The IMF hopes and expects that this drug will also be approved very soon.
For the first time ever, the IMF organised a public meeting which took place in Trinity College Dublin on the evening of Thursday 22nd November 2012. This was an open meeting which provided a forum for patients and the general public to voice their queries and concerns regarding melanoma. Look out for information on further public meetings on our home page.
2012 Annual Scientific Meeting
The 2012 Annual Scientific Meeting took place on Friday the 23rd November at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham and was a day packed with state-of-art presentations. Invited international speakers included Prof. Mario Sznol, Yale University, USA, Dr Paul Lorigan, Christie Hospital Manchester,UK and Prof. Axel Hauschild from University of Kiel, Germany.