The ASCO meeting was the showcase for major announcements of clinical trial successes and analyses of the progress made against cancer worldwide.

Paris Oncology Expert Receives Achievement Award

At the American Society of Clinical Oncology's conference in Chicago, Dr. David Khayat, MD, Ph.D., of Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital received the 2011 Distinguished Achievement Award for promoting oncology care in France.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology's five-day conference in Chicago wrapped up yesterday, vacating McCormick Place so the largest American Society of Safety Engineers' annual conference ever can set up for its June 12 opening. The ASCO meeting was the showcase for major announcements of clinical trial successes, new research results, and analyses of the progress made against cancer worldwide.

For example, the 2011 Distinguished Achievement Award presented on June 3 honored an oncology leader "who has changed the way cancer is fought in France while raising awareness and mentoring others in the future of oncology care," according to ASCO. David Khayat, MD, Ph.D., of Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital in Paris, received it in recognition of his clinical and research work and his role in promoting oncology care in France.

ASCO has nearly 30,000 members. The award was created in 2009 to honor individuals who treat cancer patients but also train and mentor the next generation of oncologists. "I am proud of this award; it means recognition by the international community and people I respect who have contributed so much to the processes we are using today when we treat our patients," he told ASCO Daily News. "We are working hard to make France a leading country in the fight against cancer."

Updates from the meeting were available at several sites, including and

Dr. Harold Varmus has been National Cancer Institute director since July 12, 2010.During a press briefing at the conference, Dr. Harold Varmus, director of the National Cancer Institute, said clinicians understand cancer much differently than they did 40 years ago, when the "war on cancer" was declared. Successes are occurring -- an NCI-funded study announced at the conference found that an accelerated drug regimen improved survival rates for patients with a high-risk form of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is the most common cancer in children.

Varmus, co-recipient of a Nobel Prize for studies of the genetic basis of cancer, has been NCI director since July 12, 2010.

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