Translational Breast Cancer Research Symposium 2020

The Australian Translational Breast Cancer Research Symposium 2020 is a one of a kind event in the research meeting calendar.

Its objective is to bring together the Australian breast cancer research community, spanning basic researchers and clinicians, for one day of updates in cutting edge translational breast cancer research.

The plenary speakers for the 2020 meeting Ciara Metcalfe (Genentech), Geoff Lindeman (WEHI), and Sarat Chandarlapaty (MSK). We have also assembled a national faculty of key leaders in breast cancer research.

Registrations are limited to 350 places; and are kindly supported by our generous sponsors.

We encourage researchers and clinicians of all stages of their careers to join us.

Symposium details


  • 12th March 2020


  • The Auditorium,
    Garvan Institute of Medical Research,
    384 Victoria St, Darlinghurst NSW 2010
  • Entry via Burton St


  • Free.

Register now

Organising Committee

  • Elgene Lim, Alex Swarbrick, Neil Portman and Simon Junankar.



Ciara Metcalfe (Genentech)

Geoff Lindeman (WEHI)

Sarat Chandarlapaty (Memorial Sloan Kettering)

Theresa Hickey (Adelaide Uni)
Peter Simpson (UQ)
Neil Portman (Garvan)
Belinda Parker (PMCC)
Joanna Achinger-Kawecka (Garvan)
Georgia Chenevix-Trench (QIMR)
Kaylene Simpson (PMCC)
Shom Goel (PMCC)
Liz Caldon (Garvan)
David Croucher (Garvan)
Melissa Davis (WEHI)
Delphine Merino (ONJCRI)
Michael Samuel (CCB)
Alex Swarbrick (Garvan)


Please note that this program may be subject to change. 

Thursday 12 March

9.00am: Welcome by Elgene Lim (Garvan) and Alex Swarbrick (Garvan)

Plenary 1:

9.10am: Sarat Chandarlapaty (Memorial Sloan Kettering) – Insights into resistance to combination endocrine therapy

Session 1: New insights into luminal breast cancer 
Chairs: Davendra Segara (St Vincent’s) and Sandra O'Toole (Garvan)

9.40am: Theresa Hickey (Adelaide Uni) – Targeting the androgen receptor in breast cancer

10.00am: Neil Portman (Garvan) – Targeting the p53 pathway in Luminal Breast Cancer

10.20am: Joanna Achinger-Kawecka (Garvan) – 3-dimensional epigenome remodelling in treatment resistant breast cancer

10.40am: Liz Caldon (Garvan) – CDK2 inhibitors, a novel therapy for ER+ and TNBC

11.00am: Peter Simpson (UQ) – Novel insights into Lobular Cancers


11.20am-12.00pm: Lunch and networking


Plenary 2:

12.00pm: Ciara Metcalfe (Genentech) – New hormone receptor-directed therapies for breast cancer

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Plenary speakers

Ciara Metcalfe 
Senior Scientist, Translational Oncology

Ciara leads the Selective ER Degrader program at Genentech and was the lead author on a publication on the mechanism of action of this class of drugs in Cell in 2019. Ciara began her scientific training at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, followed by graduate research at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology at the University of Cambridge, UK. In 2010 she joined Genentech as a Postdoctoral Fellow, and then continued as a Scientist in Genentech’s Oncology Biomarker Department. Since 2015 she has led her own research group in the Translational Oncology department. 

Professor Geoff Lindeman BSc(Med) MB BS(Hons) PhD FRACP FAHMS FAA 
Joint Division Head of ACRF Cancer Biology and Stem Cells

Geoff is a clinician-scientist focusing on breast stem cell biology and translational breast cancer research. His laboratory, jointly headed with Professor Jane Visvader, is working to understand how normal and cancerous cells develop in the breast. They are using this information to advance new treatments for breast cancer. Geoff is the foremost translational breast cancer researcher in Australia, and currently leads international trials in targeting the apoptotic pathway in breast cancer, and prevention trials with denosumab in patients harbouring the BRCA1 and 2 mutations.

Sarat Chandarlapaty MD, PhD

Sarat is a physician-scientist who undertook his physician training at Wake Forest School of Medicine and his PhD at University of North Carolina. His lab focuses on understanding the regulation of growth factor signal transduction pathways that are aberrantly activated in cancers, with a focus on those implicated in breast cancer pathogenesis. Sarat is a leader in deciphering the mechanisms of resistance to CDK4/6 inhibitors, drugs that have been revolutionising the treatment of advanced ER+ breast cancer.