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In April 2011, eighty-five physicians and scientists gathered in Bethesda, Maryland to exchange the latest discoveries about chordoma and build partnerships with colleagues from across the world. Researchers came from thirty-one institutions in nine different countries, including – for the first time – four different pharmaceutical companies. At the workshop thirty-two speakers, including six Chordoma Foundation grant recipients, presented new, unpublished data spanning the gamut from epidemiology to genomics to clinical trials.
In April 2008, just eleven months after the first International Chordoma Research Workshop (ICRW) the Chordoma Foundation co-hosted a longer, larger, and more in-depth second ICRW in partnership with the National Cancer Institute and the NIH Office of Rare Diseases. The number of physicians and scientists who attended the second ICRW increased by 50%, further expanding the emerging field of chordoma research, and sparking new collaborations between researchers across disciplines and institutions. As a result of the partnerships formed between researchers at the first ICRW, in the short time between the two workshops a staggering amount of progress was made towards identifying the molecular and genetic basis of chordoma. Many of the questions raised by participants at the first ICRW were answered, and many new questions, ideas, and theories emerged. The Research Roadmap developed at the first ICRW was re-evaluated and updated to reflect the latest scientific developments.
In May 2007, the Chordoma Foundation co-hosted the First International Chordoma Research Workshop along with the NIH Office of Rare Diseases, the National Human Genome Research Institute, the National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke, and the National Cancer Institute. The workshop brought together a diverse group of 53 physicians and scientists from around the world, including some of the brightest minds in sarcoma research, drug development and human genetics. Participants included both scientists deeply involved in chordoma research and experts in related fields. What emerged was broad consensus regarding research priorities, and a plan for moving the field forward. For the first time ever an enthusiastic and collegial chordoma research community coalesced around a set of shared goals aimed at improving the treatment of chordoma patients, and new collaborations were initiated involving multidisciplinary research teams in North America, Europe and Asia.