EuroGRAFT
Action number CA17138 COST

First Working Group Meeting

The first working group meeting was held from 7-8th November 2018, at the Rudjer Boskovic Institute in Zagreb, Croatia.

The first working group meeting was held from 7-8th November 2018, at the Rudjer Boskovic Institute in Zagreb, Croatia. Professor Anne Dickinson, Chair of the Action, kicked off with a welcome to the first official meeting and round table introductions were made. This was followed by recapping the objectives of the Action, discussing plans for the next grant period and summarising the planned Short Term Scientific Meetings.

The working groups then split into two groups to discuss and confirm their specific aims, objectives and plans for the duration of the first grant period.

WG1 – Development of an epidemiological platform

The group agreed on the following aims:

  • Capture true incidence and prevalence of cGVHD differentiated from late aGVHD
  • Capture number of patients with active, controlled, inactive and resolved cGVHD
  • Capture GVHD after diagnosis of relapse of the underlying malignancy including GVHD after pre-emptive DLI

During grant period 1 the group will develop a survey which will be circulated among transplant centers in Europe and crosscheck with EBMT to get data on cGVHD and outcome for all centers contributing local data. An STSM will be planned to merge data for a joint analysis

Future WG1 plans include introduction of the FAIR principles to existing and future databases, identification of essential information relevant for long term outcome and additional potential helpful variables. The will also improve documentation of cGVHD within the EBMT registry.

WG3 – Working Group on socio-economics and quality of life

The group agreed on the following aims:

  • Nominate members to research national transplant centres for QoL information and social /economic aspects of cGvHD

Initial plans for the group include performing a survey and reviewing the current literature. The group will also make a toolbox for the EUROGRAFT website to include a list of available PRO questionnaires validated in cGVHD populations, and advertise via the EUROGRAFT website to create a network of experts interested in socioeconomic aspects cGVHD.

Future plans for WG3 include expansion of the Quality of Life Toolbox and survey the current PRO collection in EU. The group will initiate patient interviews/ focus groups on research goals based on Quality of Life review and coordinate focus groups on socioeconomic issues. This will allow them to identify reasonable socioeconomic goals within the scope of the COST initiative and develop a training school on PRO/QoL and socioeconomic aspects of cGVHD

WG4 – Working Group on diagnostic criteria and response assessment in cGVHD

The group agreed on the following aims:

  • Investigate the implementation and use of NIH-defined diagnostic criteria of cGVHD and NIH recommendations for response assessment in routine care
  • Develop online training tools for NIH-defined diagnostic criteria of cGVHD

In the first instance, WG4 will perform a survey on the use of NIH-defined diagnostic criteria of cGVHD and response assessment in clinical routine across Europe. They will also initiate an online pictorial atlas on GVHD (skin, mouth, histology, imaging – HRCT…) and short presentations of cGVHD cases (up to 3-4 minutes), including a tutorial of assessment and treatment for the EUROGRAFT website.

WG2 – Working Group on molecular and cellular biomarkers of cGVHD

The group agreed on the following aims during the discussion:

  • Use current databases with linked clinical data to assess the incidence and severity of cGVHD
  • Use epidemiology and data on genetic profiles to further understand the disease
  • Collate knowledge on novel potential biomarkers for cGVHD and their relevance to the development of co-morbidities
  • Analyse current biomarkers and compare with those derived after immunotherapies

The initial plans for WG2 include a comprehensive review of the literature on molecular and cellular biomarkers, under advice from biomarker experts and statisticians. Newcastle already has plans to host 1 STSM to begin January 2019 to focus on molecular biomarkers. In total, the group will prepare 2 reviews of the literature, one on cellular and one on molecular biomarkers and view of the state-of-the-art practice.

WG5 – Working Group on immunotherapy for the treatment of cGVHD

The group agreed on the following aims during the discussion:

  • Perform literature searches and develop drafts of reviews of the literature on immunotherapy of cGvHD

During grant period 1 WG5 will survey and review the literature on cellular therapy and non-cellular therapy under advice from immunotherapy experts and statisticians. There are plans for Pisa to host 1 STSM to begin January 2019 to produce a review paper on non-cellular therapies.

The meeting concluded with a summary session attended by all Working Groups in order to present their agreed objectives and deliverables across the Action. The details for the next Working Group meeting were also announced, to be held in February in Pisa, Italy. Finally, the meeting concluded with a wonderful networking dinner hosted in the centre of Zagreb.

Dates

Wed 07 Nov 2018 - Thu 08 Nov 2018


Location

Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Zagreb

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First Working Group Meeting

The first working group meeting was held from 7-8th November 2018, at the Rudjer Boskovic Institute in Zagreb, Croatia.

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