The workshop took place in Athens on the 22-23 October 2012. The event was technically co-sponsored by IEEE-EMBS and funded by the European Commission through the Transatlantic TUMOR Project in the Framework of the Virtual Physiological Human (VPH) Initiative.
Cancer is anatural phenomenonand consequently is amenable to mathematical and computational description. Clinically driven complex multi-scale cancer models are capable of producing realistic spatio-temporal and patient specific simulations of commonly-used clinical interventions such as radio-chemotherapy. Clinical data-processing procedures and computer technologies play an important role in this context. Following clinical adaptation and validation within the framework of clinico-genomic trials, models are expected to advance the prospect of individualized treatment optimization, this being the long term goal of the emergent scientific, technological and medical discipline ofin silicooncology.
Treatment optimization is to be achieved through experimentationin silicoi.e. on the computer. Moreover, provision of improved insight into tumor dynamics and optimization of clinical trial design and interpretation constitute short- and mid-term goals of this new domain.
The IEEE-EMBS technically co-sponsored 5th International Advanced Research Workshop onIn SilicoOncology and Cancer Investigation (5th IARWISOCI), being also the transatlantic TUMOR project workshop (www.tumor-project.eu), proved an excellent opportunity for contributing to the shaping of the discipline.
The proceedings of the workshop include the presented papers, which deal with modeling of tumor dynamics and response to treatment from the biochemical to the macroscopic level and from basic science to clinics via information technology. They have been contributed (some by invitation) by top international researchers and research groups.
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In silicooncology could be formally defined as being "…a complex and multiscale combination of sciences, technologies and clinical medicine intending to simulate malignant tumor growth and tumor and normal tissue response to therapeutic modalities at all biomedically meaningful spatio-temporal scales". Its long term goal is to quantitatively understand cancer and related phenomena and optimize therapeutic interventions by performingin silico experiments using clinical, imaging, histopathological, molecular and pharmacogenomic data from individual patients. In order to achieve such an ambitious goal translation of cancer models andoncosimulatorsinto the clinical trials arena is asine qua noncondition.
In silicooncology serves as an excellent paradigm of the emergent generic domain ofin silicomedicine, which has been designated as one of the key research areas to be supported by the European Commission’s upcoming research funding framework, "HORIZON 2020" (http://ec.europa.eu/research/horizon2020/index_en.cfm). Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness. Running from 2014 to 2020 with an €80 billion budget, the EU’s new program for research and innovation is part of the drive to create new growth and jobs in Europe. A branch of the program is entitled: “Usingin-silicomedicine for improving disease management and prediction.” The current and future importance of bothin silicooncology andin silicomedicine is therefore unquestionable.
The Organizing Committee of the workshop consisted of the following persons: