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I had the great pleasure to attend the World Preclinical Congress WPC for the 1st time in Boston. It was a great opportunity to meet some new people who work in Biotech, CRO and Pharmaceutical companies that use pre-clinical models. The conference encompassed several different subsections but the talks I attended were for Preclinical Models in Oncology and Tumor Models in Immunotherapy. But there were others more relevant to imaging and drug discovery and bioavailability. I learned a lot about what challenges scientists are facing with the heterogeneity of not only mice but of their tumor lines as well. There is a bit of shift to PDX models with patient derived tumor cells in humanized mice. Which is logical when you think of the ultimate purpose of these mice is to replicate human biology as closely as possible so having a similar immune response and tumor cells is really the next step. There were so many great presentations but here are a few of my favorites: Neal Goodwin: PDX program for clinical advancement Dai Fukumura: Normalizing Tumor Microvasculature and Microenvironment Livio Trusolino: Preclinical Models for Precision Medicine in Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Elaine Pinheiro: Preclinical to Clinical Translation of Anti-PD1 Blockade Maria Angelica Cortez: Combining Radiation Therapy and Cancer Immunotherapy In particular I thought the talk on combining radiation with immunotherapy quite interesting, mostly because I have a radiation biology background. The key to this is the immune stimulating effect of the targeted radiation. Elaine Pinherio’s talk had a slide on a combination therapy of their Anti-PD1 compound with an immune stimulator that showed significant increases in survival and tumor response. They are exploring using radiation with their Anti-PD1 compound for future studies as well. So, I think this is a very useful conference for those looking to upgrade their mouse model and find out what major Biotech firms are doing with their mouse models. There was a lot of information on imaging and molecular mechanisms of drug compounds for if you want to see the latest and greatest on those technologies this is a great conference for you.

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