SAN DIEGO - Lung cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States and often the most fatal unless caught early, but scientists are working on ways to improve their understanding of the disease.
Several hundred scientists will gather in San Diego at the San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina during Jan. 8-11, 2012, for the AACR-IASLC Joint Conference on Molecular Origins of Lung Cancer: Biology, Therapy and Personalized Medicine.
The conference is jointly sponsored by the American Association for Cancer Research and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer.
The conference hosted a media briefing, entitled "Lung Cancer Diagnosis: Pitfalls, Challenges and the Path Ahead," on Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 1:00 p.m. PT (4:00 p.m. ET). The briefing was held in the Atlanta/Chicago room of the San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina.
The following leaders in lung cancer spoke at the press conference:
- Roy Herbst, M.D., Ph.D., chief of medical oncology and associate director for translational research at the Yale Cancer Center;
- David P. Carbone, M.D., Ph.D., Harold L. Moses chair in cancer research, director of the Specialized Program of Research Excellence in Lung Cancer and co-leader of the Thoracic/Head and Neck Research Program at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center; and
- Paul A. Bunn, M.D., professor and James Dudley chair in cancer research at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
Conference leaders have also designated the following research as newsworthy:
- Estrogen-Targeting Drug Combo May Help Prevent Lung Cancer
- Researchers Map Potential Genetic Origins, Pathways of Lung Cancer in Never-Smokers
- Ganetespib Showed Activity in KRAS-Mutant NSCLC as Monotherapy and in Combinations
- Precancer Markers Identified in Airway Epithelium Cells of Healthy Smokers
- Sorafenib Effective in Patients With Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, but Low Survival Rates Reported
- Sensitive Detection Method Analyzes Circulating Tumor Cells in Patients With Lung Cancer
- Genetic Composition of Multicentric Lung Tumors Appears to be Similar
About the AACR:
The mission of the American Association for Cancer Research is to prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1907, the AACR is the worlds oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research. The membership includes 33,000 laboratory, translational and clinical researchers; health care professionals; and cancer survivors and advocates in the United States and more than 90 other countries. The AACR marshals the full spectrum of expertise from the cancer community to accelerate progress in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer through high-quality scientific and educational programs. It funds innovative, meritorious research grants, research fellowships and career development awards to young investigators, and it also funds cutting-edge research projects conducted by senior researchers. The AACR has numerous fruitful collaborations with organizations and foundations in the United States and abroad and functions as the Scientific Partner of Stand Up To Cancer, a charitable initiative that supports groundbreaking research aimed at getting new cancer treatments to patients in an accelerated time frame. The AACR Annual Meeting attracts more than 17,000 participants who share the latest discoveries and developments in the field. Special Conferences throughout the year present novel data across a wide variety of topics in cancer research, treatment and patient care, and Educational Workshops are held for the training of young cancer investigators. The AACR publishes seven major peer-reviewed journals: Cancer Discovery; Cancer Research; Clinical Cancer Research; Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention; Molecular Cancer Therapeutics; Molecular Cancer Research; and Cancer Prevention Research. In 2010, AACR journals received 20 percent of the total number of citations given to oncology journals. The AACR also publishes Cancer Today, a magazine for cancer patients, survivors and their caregivers, which provides practical knowledge and new hope for cancer survivors. A major goal of the AACR is to educate the general public and policymakers about the value of cancer research in improving public health, the vital importance of increases in sustained funding for cancer research and biomedical science, and the need for national policies that foster innovation and the acceleration of progress against the 200 diseases we call cancer.
Follow the AACR on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/aacr.org 
About the IASLC:
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) is the only global organization dedicated to the study of lung cancer. Founded in 1974, the associations membership includes more than 3,500 lung cancer specialists in 80 countries.
IASLC members promote the study of etiology, epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and all other aspects of lung cancer and thoracic malignancies. IASLC disseminates information about lung cancer to scientists, members of the medical community and the public and uses all available means to eliminate lung cancer as a health threat for individual patients throughout the world. Membership is open to any physician, scientist, nurse or allied health professional interested in lung cancer, including patients, survivors, caregivers and advocates.
IASLC publishes the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, a valuable resource for medical specialists and scientists who focus on the detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer.
To learn more about IASLC, visit http://iaslc.org 
In San Diego, Jan. 8-11: