IACR Newsletter No. 47, January 2017

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Dear IACR Members and Colleagues,

As we have wrapped up 2016, we thank you for your participation in the various activities of the past year, particularly in the 38th IACR Annual Scientific Conference in Marrakesh last October, and in the various projects and collaborations promoting cancer registry development.

It has been some time since we sent out a IACR newsletter, you will therefore find that this edition is packed with more information and updates.  Please take time to read to the bottom of the page, and share the information with colleagues! 


Do take advantage of the learning opportunities organized by our hubs, networks and partners, as well as the reports and other resource materials made available to the membership. Announcements are regularly posted at our website

On behalf of the IACR Board and Secretariat, warm greetings to you all and best wishes for 2017.


Roberto Zanetti
IACR President


New IACR Constitution and Standing Rules

The Association's new Constitution and Standing Rules, ratified by the Board and submitted to the vote of the members, have been approved by the voting process which ended in January 2016.  The updated version of the Constitution conserves valued parts of the old Constitution while taking into consideration other suggestions to best meet the needs of our membership. 
The IACR Board of Directors and Secretariat, during the 38th IACR Scientific Conference in Marrakesh, October 2016

Elections of IACR Officers

IACR's elections were held in mid-2016 and the terms of office took effect as of 18 October 2016. Congratulations and welcome to the following elected officers of IACR:

Tomohiro Matsuda (Japan) as President-Elect; 

Elisabete Weiderpass (Norway) as Regional Representative for Europe; 

Donna Turner (Canada) as Regional Representative for North America;

Mohamed Hsairi (Tunisia) as Regional Representative for Africa; and 

Rajesh Dikshit (India) as Regional Representative for Asia.
We expect to continue the previous work of the Regional Representatives and hope that they bring new ideas for the forthcoming activities of IACR. 
The following officers will remain for their respective terms:

Roberto Zanetti (Piedmont, Italy) as President;

Freddie Bray (IARC, Lyon) as Executive Secretary;
Stefano Rosso, Piedmont, Italy as Treasurer;

Regional Representatives:
Joanne Aitken (Queensland CR, Australia for Oceania), Sultan Eser (Izmir CR, Turkey for Asia), Enrique Barrios (Montevideo CR, Uruguay for Central and South America), Kevin Ward (Georgia Center for Cancer Statistics, Atlanta, Georgia, USA for North America) and 
Anna Gavin (Northern Ireland CR, UK, for Europe).

Special thanks to all the officers who have completed their terms and for their successful interactive work with the cancer registries in their areas: Sabine Siesling (General Secretary), Hideo Tanaka (Asia), Eero Pukkala (Europe), Maria Shymura (North America) and Anne Korir (Africa). 

The 38th Annual Scientific Meeting in Marrakesh, Morocco

Plenary themes:

Cancer Surveillance for Cancer Control.  The role of cancer registries to support the planning, implementation and monitoring of cancer control interventions;

Cancer in Africa.  Examples of progress in Africa of cancer registration and cancer control;

Strengthening Health Data.  Examining improvements in data to assess the cancer burden in populations – making the case for cancer registries; and the role of vital registries, electronic medical health records and broader disease surveillance;

Infectious-Related Cancers.  A review of the evidence relating to infectious etiology of cancers, the impact of health transitions on the profile of cancer and the role of prevention; and 

Childhood Cancers.  Linking data to provide evidence and inform action in low- and middle-income countries.

Serving as keynote presenters of the conference were:

Dr. Latifa Belakhel (Ministère de la Santé, Rabat, Maroc) on National Plan on the Prevention and Control of Cancer 2010-2019: Summary of Mid-Term Projects, Morocco;

Dr. Eva Steliarova (IARC, Lyon, France), on Childhood Cancers: Linking data to provide evidence and inform action in low- and middle-income countries;

Dr. Christopher G Chute (Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Maryland, USA), on the International Classification of Disease Revision process at WHO;

Prof. Alexander Katalinic (Universität zu Lübeck, Lubeck, Germany), On the way to a sustainable structure - Recent activities of the European Network of Cancer Registries; and




Dr. Florence Tangka (CDC, Atlanta, USA), on the Economics of Cancer Registration: The Cost to Sustain and Improve Registries for Cancer Control Planning

The Johannes Clemmesen Lecture:  The Evolution of Cancer Registration in Africa, was presented by no other than Dr. Donald Maxwell Parkin of University of Oxford.

Over 200 abstracts were submitted for the conference which led to over 60 oral presentations and over 100 posters.  Download the 2016 IACR Book of Abstracts.

Honorary memberships:  At the end of the conference, IACR honorary memberships were awarded to Drs. Hans Storm, Vivien Chen and Prof Charles Gombe Mbalawa.  

IACR 2016 Marrakesh had 226 participants from:  

Algeria, Australia, Benin, Brazil, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, India, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Finland, Greece, Libya, Malawi, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Canada, Congo, Denmark, Indonesia, Kuwait, Liberia, Morocco, USA, UK, France, South Korea, Italy, Japan, Spain, Iran, China, Kenya, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Philippines, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe 

The 38th IACR Annual Conference of the was hosted in conjunction with the Lalla Salma Foundation and the Casablanca Cancer Registry.

Thank you again to those who came and joined us in Marrakesh last October!

2017 Annual Scientific Meeting date and venue announced:  
Utrecht, the Netherlands, 17-19 October

The hosting of the European round of the 2017 IACR Scientific Conference was awarded to Utrecht, with the Netherlands Cancer Registry and Belgian Cancer Registry successfully preparing the bid as joint local organizers. Further details to follow regarding the program.  

Watch out for the conference website that will be out next month.  Abstract submissions are planned for April - May.

Proposals for hosting the IACR Annual Scientific Meetings, 2018 – 2021

Offers to host future editions have been expressed by Cancer Registries members in Latin America (1) and Asia including the Middle East (2). We continue to invite interested member registries to submit offers to host future meetings, with Latin and Central America, Oceania and North America  the respective locations of the next IACR annual scientific meetings.


Announcements and Reminders for Registries:

IARC Summer School 2017

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) will be holding its Summer School in June and July 2017.   The announcement and details for application are available at the IARC website: This year, there will be a dedicated module on "Cancer Survival Methods for Cancer Registries."  

A special note to our members and partners:  you still have time to send in applications, these are going to be accepted until 3 February 2017.


Related Developments:


CI5 (Cancer Incidence in 5 Continents) Volume XI

Responding to the Cancer Incidence in Five Continents Volume XI (CI5-XI) call for data, 479 registries have submitted data worldwide. The CI5-XI Editorial Board, comprised of IARC staff and the Association’s President – Dr. Roberto Zanetti, has met regularly since the spring of 2016 to evaluate the datasets to ensure those selected for publication are comparable, complete and accurate.

As this process is now completed for the majority of datasets, the first round of letters back to registries are expected to be issued beginning February 2017 to detail the outcome of the evaluations. The CI5-XI Editorial Board is aiming to finalize the publication by the end of 2017 through an online release followed shortly by a printed volume. With this in mind, registries with a ‘pending status’ from the initial evaluation will be asked to respond to questions by April 2017 so that a final decision on datasets can be made in July.

Please continue to use the CI5-XI portal for additional data submissions ( Please email queries to


Childhood cancer: IICC-3

The International Incidence of Childhood Cancer (IICC) is a collaborative project of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and the International Association of Cancer Registries (IACR). The objective is to disseminate the available data on the incidence of cancer in children around the world. This will be achieved through the publication of a monograph, the third volume in the IICC series (IICC-3), co-sponsored by the Union of International Cancer Control (UICC). Both print and electronic versions are envisaged. Data from 440 registries in five continents have been collected, validated, analyzed and evaluated. More than 300 registries provided high quality datasets and were selected for publication.

The registries are being contacted with last requests, which need to be promptly addressed to help the online data release on the occasion of the
International Childhood Cancer Day on 15 February. The printed publication will follow later in 2017 and suggestions for the cover picture are still accepted at  

The IICC-3 Editors acknowledge contribution of all the registries to the improvement of quality and comparability of global data on childhood cancer incidence.


Cancer Registration Principles and Methods, 3rd Edition

The Editorial Board of the 3rd Edition of the Cancer Registration Principles and Methods held its first meeting at IARC in Lyon.  The target date for the publication of this new edition is the first quarter of 2018.


Updates from the GICR Project Team and Partners

IAEA-WHO-IARC-AFCRN Workshop in Ghana with participants across Africa, on building registry capacity for national cancer control planning


To further increase support to countries through the Global Initiative for Cancer Registry Development (GICR), a new set of training activities have been created. The GICRNet will work with local experts to develop a network of ‘IARC Regional Trainers’ in core cancer registration subject areas – CanReg5, data collection, management, analysis and reporting. IARC will provide the necessary preparation to enable trainers to offer courses and tailored assistance to registry staff within their region. Trainers will also be asked to contribute to enhancement of learning material and tools. This approach was employed for the first time for CanReg5 in January 2016, with the participation in a masterclass of 14 experts from the Izmir, Latin America, Mumbai and Sub Saharan African Hubs. Deployment of those trained at IARC has begun, serving as faculty in regional courses and by handling queries. Contact information for GICRNet IARC trainers will be posted on the GICR website shortly.  

To supplement formal training, the GICR Mentorship Programme will be launched later this year. Opportunities will be available for more established registries to provide practical training to staff from less developed registries within the same region. During the course of a mentorship stay, trainee(s) will receive an in‐depth, hands-on experience in a specific aspect of cancer registry operations. 

For further information please contact the GICR Team at:  




Together with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), US National Cancer Institute (NCI), Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries, site visits to Bahamas, Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago were conducted. In June 2016, a workshop in the Turks and Caicos discussed priorities for the IARC Hub. As an outcome, a CanReg course was held at the US NCI in December. 

North Africa, and Central and West Asia (Izmir Hub)

The official inauguration of Izmir Hub and face to face meeting of the Advisory Committee took place in February 2016. The Izmir cancer registry organized a series of training workshops for other Turkish cancer registries and hosted one on-site training for the cancer registry team from Azerbaijan (April 2016).  In collaboration with WHO-EMRO, two cancer registry assessment workshops were organized in 2016, in Iraq and in Tunisia for the assessment of cancer registration in Libya. A workshop and site visit to Almaty, Kazakhstan were organized in April, followed by an IAEA imPACT mission in November 2016. In collaboration with WHO EURO, two basic cancer registration courses in Russian language were organized, for the Russian Federation in Obninsk (September) and for other CIS countries in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (November). The first advanced Hub course in data analysis using PBCR data was held in Izmir in September 2016. An IARC Collaborative Research Agreement was signed with the Cyprus Cancer Registry and agreements with Jordan and Izmir cancer registries are likewise in process.  

IARC Technical Report No 43:  Planning and developing cancer registration in low- and middle-income countries, has been translated to Russian and is available.  Click here for to view or downloand the electronic copy of the technical report.   

Latin America

The official inauguration of the Hub took place at the National Cancer Institute (INC) in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was followed with a visit to the Brazilian National Cancer Institute to advance their support as a collaborating center in August 2016. Site visits were performed to Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala cancer registries, all in 2016. Training focused on mentorships with mentees from Guatemala, El Salvador, Paraguay, Panama and Cuba staying in Argentina and Uruguay. Discussions are underway to finalize agreements with Panama and Paraguay. The Hub facilitated two national training courses in the last quarter of 2016 (from Argentina and Chile, in writing reports and coding) to other participants and countries in the region. Several network activities disseminating the work of the GICR in the Hub were performed.  In addition, several scientific papers highlighting the cancer burden in the region as well as the cancer surveillance situation were published. The Cancer Burden in South and Central America project was completed with the publication of a supplement in the journal Cancer Epidemiology.

South, East and South-Eastern Asia (Mumbai Hub)

The Mumbai Hub collaborated with NCI Thailand to deliver basic courses in cancer registration in Malaysia (March) and Indonesia (May). With collaboration from the WHO South East Asian Regional Office (WHO-SEARO), a course was held in November at the Tata Memorial Centre in Mumbai, India. The GICR also participated in the eCanLEAD course in June 2016, developed by the Korean National Cancer Centre in conjunction with the WHO Western Pacific Regional Office (WPRO), to review online learning tools and develop cancer control plans for selected countries. Site visits to Myanmar and Vietnam were conducted in December 2016, the former in conjunction with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s ImPACT mission while the later was a taskforce comprised of IARC, US NCI and the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) representatives. Discussions with several organizations are underway to develop GICR IARC Collaborating Centres in the region to help deliver the Hub functions. Together with the WHO-SEARO, Tata Memorial Centre and the GICR, the South-East Asia Regional Cancer Registry Network (SEAR- Cancer Registry Network) is under development in support of the sixty-eight Regional Committee of WHO-SEARO Resolution (SEA/RC68/R5) to strengthen cancer prevention and control. 

Sub-Saharan Africa

The Hub conducted a one-week training course in Ghana, in collaboration with IAEA in December 2016.  Following the course, the AFCRN Annual Review meeting was held.  Earlier in the year, GICR staff attended a national cancer control workshop in Botswana to assist with planning for a registry.  The AFCRN, together with its memberships of registries, has prepared a report of cancer trends in Sub-Saharan Africa, along with having finalized a Manual of Standard Operating Procedures available here (insert link).

More information on the AFCRN website.

Pacific Islands

A Hub workshop was held in conjunction with the 8th General Assembly and International Conference of Asian Pacific Organization for Cancer Prevention (APOCP8) in April 2016. The workshop presented the Hub priorities and sought input from participants on the way forward. A site visit to Fiji was conducted in April to review the registry operations and identify opportunities for development.  
1st photo: A site visit in Hue, Vietnam (December 2016); 2nd photo: A visit to the Bangkok Cancer Registry (September 2016)
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