On january 26-27 2012 we organized a conference for scientists and clinicians no older than 40 years at the Trippenhuis in Amsterdam, home to the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.

This conference was an initiative of  Inspire2live, a cancer patients’ organisation committed to making a difference for cancer patients. The mission of Inspire2Live is ‘Getting cancer under control in 10 years and inspire people to live a happy and healthy life in harmony with it’. They have already proven to be very effective in raising funds for cancer research. So far the organisation has invested approximately 60 million euro in cancer research and implementation of treatments in the last 5 years. They receive strong support from the Central Bank of the Netherlands and the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In January 2011, Inspire2Live organised its first conference. This conference, which marked the kick-off of the Understanding Life program, was attended by the world’s most excellent researchers and clinicians. Together, these experts provided the framework for realising our ambition to get cancer under control in 10 years. The Understanding Life program, which reflects our ambition – needs the most excellent young researchers and clinicians to bring the program to fruition and engage the up and coming generation of researchers-clinicians. They will be at the forefront of new ways of working, new ways of thinking and new ways of sharing reward and generating results that will benefit patients.

Young clinicians and researchers formulated a challenging program for a two-day conference, in which basic research, translational medicine and innovative clinical practices met. We invited people from a variety of disciplines to add intelligence to the program. Together, these young scientist came up with ideas on the following subjects:

1.     Creating a breakthrough in oncology

2.     From target to trial

3.     New methods for better results

4.     Faster trials for faster results

5.     Lifestyle and prevention

The answers will lead to new research and a new agenda to work on our challenge: to get cancer under control before 2021!