More than 300 physicians, researchers, nurses, integrative medicine practitioners, patient advocates and patients from 17 countries convened at the Omni Galleria in Houston, Texas, from October 26 to 28 at the 11th International Conference of the Society for Integrative Oncology. Programs focused on the theme of personalized integrative oncology - targeted approaches for optimal outcomes. SIO2014 was presented in association with the University of Minnesota Department of Continuing Medical Education and with the assistance of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

SIO2014 featured three outstanding keynote presentations. “The Contributions of Genomics to Integrative Oncology,” presented by John Mendelsohn, MD, past President of MD Anderson Cancer Center, and currently MD Anderson’s Director of the Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy; the Dr. Rogers Prize Lecture on “Stress and Cancer: From Science to Personal Perspective,” presented by Sonia Lupien, PhD, Fernand-Seguin Research Centre of Louis–H. Lafontain Hospital, Department of Psychiatry at the University of Montreal; and “The Impact of Sleep, Fatigue and Circadian Rhythms on Patients With Cancer,” presented by Sonia Ancoli-Israel, PhD, University of California San Diego School of Medicine.

Another highlight of the conference was the plenary session announcing two new resources from SIO – Clinical Practice Guidelines on the Use of Integrative Therapies as Supportive Care in Patients Treated for Breast Cancerand a Monograph on the Role of Integrative Oncology for Cancer Survivorship published in The Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI).

Additional plenary sessions focused on personalized integrative oncology and on symptom management in integrative oncology, and workshops covered personalized integrative treatment strategies; streamlining data collection, analysis and reporting across integrative oncology settings; acupuncture clinical research; and early career; as well as two multidisciplinary tumor boards and a review of literature. Oral abstract presentations focused on pre-clinical natural products, TCM and acupuncture, mind-body therapies, patient-reported outcomes, health services, targeted and transitional issues, energy and balance and cancer symptom control, as well as “The Best of SIO” presentations. As a new feature, attendees had the opportunity to participate in two pre-conference workshops on clinical research and on clinical practice and business models.

The SIO conference, for the first time, featured a clinical track. This track was in response to previous conference evaluations asking for more practical “take home” tips for practicing clinicians and was designed to expose practicing clinicians to cutting-edge research about complementary therapies and provide them with practical “take home” information for integrating evidence-based complementary therapies into their clinical practice. For the second year, the conference hosted five patient advocate scholars. Also, in a continuing tradition of supporting new investigators in the field of integrative oncology SIO hosted three research trainees from the United States, Australia and Canada, which was made possible through an R13 grant sponsored by the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute (NCI), Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).

Attendees noted the value of hearing about and discussing integrative models in such a multi-disciplinary forum.

Selected presentations from the conference were videotaped and are available for purchase from Conference Recording Service, Inc., 2317 Carquinez Avenue, El Cerrito CA 94530; To visit the Best of SIO2014 Abstracts, click here.