EDITOR IN CHIEF
Massimo Gion was born in 1950 in Venice, Italy, the city where he continues to work and live in with his family. He graduated in 1975 with honors from the University of Padua with a Medical degree and further specialized also with honors in Endocrinology, Oncological Radiotherapy and Clinical Biology. Today he is Head of the Unit of Laboratory Medicine and Head of the Department of Clinical Pathology of the Venetian Health Authorities ULSS12.
His formation as a physician and researcher began at the Institution of Medical Semiotics of the University of Padua, and then continued at the Venice Hospital in the early 80’s. There he carried out his professional and research activities in the Division of Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine for about a decade.
Working in-between ward and laboratory he had the opportunity to mature a crucial experience on the translation of research on tumor markers on the actual routine clinical practice, from the time when the first tumor biomarkers were discovered and used.
He acquired additional proficiencies in the organization of research activity as a visiting fellow to research centers of excellence in Italy and Europe, and in 1982 he established a laboratory finalized in the study and validation of cancer biomarkers. The laboratory - a pioneer structure in the translational research in oncology - was recognized in 1987 by the Veneto Region as the Regional Center for the Study of Biological Markers of Malignancy (CRIBT) and Dr. Gion continues to be its Director till this day. The Center soon became the regional and, then national, reference center for cancer biomarkers and in 1997 it was acknowledged by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) as one of the reference laboratories for the country of Italy.
The most significant achievements regard the studies conducted on biomarker use in secondary and tertiary cancer prevention. He has coordinated studies for analytical and clinical validation of several tumor markers currently used in the clinical practice in Italy (i.e. CA15.3, PSA, hormone receptors, etc.).
He developed the first studies on the dynamic evaluation of biomarkers, based on the observation of variations over time instead of on a positive/negative threshold value, an application particularly important in tertiary prevention.
He was among the first in perceiving the need of organizing banks of biological samples – with their corresponding clinical data - in a manner suitable to allow for a rapid study of new biomarkers. The Biological Bank he founded today includes over 60,000 samples.
Since 1987, he has assessed and monitored appropriateness of biomarker use, foreseeing the risks connected to an inappropriate use. In this field of research, he has developed innovative models of survey and monitoring.
This activity has resulted in over 250 publications on international and national scientific journals, 40 chapters in books and manuals and 11 books that he has personally authored. He has conducted educational endeavors, organizing and managing many events, participating as an academic professor in several classes, holding lessons in numerous universities and mentoring graduate and post-graduate students.
In the field of biomarkers in oncology, he has a role recognized by the Scientific Community. In fact, he is coordinator of the Study Group “Tumoral Markers” of The Italian Society of Clinical Biochemistry and Clinical Molecular Biology (SIBioC); Chairman of the Working Group on “Clinical Guidelines” of the European Group on Tumor Markers (EGTM); component of the ‘Pathobiology Group’ of the European Organization for the Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC). Furthermore, he belonged to the Statistics Subcommitee of the Working Group on Cancer Diagnosis of the NCI-EORTC; of the Working Group “Scientific bases for the definition of guidelines in the clinical environment of prostate, colorectal, lung and liver tumors” (MiUR-CNR); of the Group “Guidelines for the Prostatic Biopsies” (Guone, SIUrO, Sieun, SIBioC); of the Committee for the “Diagnosis, Treatment and Rehabilitation Protocols for Breast Cancer for the Forza Operativa Nazionale sul Carcinoma Mammario (FONCaM); for the Editorial Committee of the project for CNR-ACRO for the creation and distribution of clinical guidelines.
He has been head of 6 research project for the Veneto Region, 3 CNR research projects, one FIRB-MiUR research project and one European project (HealthOptimum).
Due to his specific competence in the field of biomarkers, and in general, Laboratory Medicine, he has been qualified to fill specific roles in the organization and management of the public healthcare system. He is in fact member of both the Working Group for Biobanks and the Oncology Committee for the Veneto Region. Additionally, he was member of the Working Group for the Agency of the Regional Health Services (AGENAS) for the preparation of national guidelines on various subjects concerning oncology and screening programs and member of the Working Group on Breast Cancer for the National Oncology Committee.
Today, his principal research areas of interest continue to develop in two directions. The first is the translational research aimed for the evaluation and use of biomarkers in solid tumors for the diagnosis, prognosis and prediction responses of therapies and disease monitoring. In this direction, his research Group is studying new biomarkers connected to inflammation and angiogenesis, or new biological matrices on where to study the presence of biomarkers. He is also working on the optimization use of traditional markers, as well as the research and organizational issues concerning biological sample banking.
The second line of interest regards the monitoring of biomarkers ordering and the implementation of guidelines aimed at the improvement of their appropriate use. In this area, he has contributed to the development of 10 national guidelines and 4 international guidelines on biomarkers. But most importantly, he has supervised and coordinated a road-map for the guidelines on the use of markers which has produced 4 editions, the last one prepared in 2010 in collaboration with 7 scientific societies. The “Guide”, whose coordinated update is due in 2014, presents in a very concise and comparative manner the recommendations of various guidelines, combined with their overall quality as guidelines. Thanks to this innovative approach, such a tool has already been adopted by several Regions as a reference document to improve the appropriateness of biomarkers used. On the basis of the availability of the “Guide” and having seen its use in many healthcare decision making settings, he has proposed to activate an Interregional Work Table finalized to produce a systematic plan for the improvement of the clinical practice in the use of oncological biomarkers. In 2012, the Health Commission formalized the “Interregional Work Table” in which, today, 13 regions have formally adhered to. The Interregional Work Table intends to conduct, at a national level, coordinated interventions aimed for the improvement of appropriateness and for the identification of “orphan” areas of knowledge to orient translational research.
Maria Grazia Daidone – Milan, Italy
Robin Leake - Glasgow, UK
Giampietro Gasparini - Bari, Italy
Masakazu Toi - Kyoto, Japan
Gian Luigi Buraggi - Milan, Italy
Emilio Bombardieri - Milan, Italy
SUBJECT AREA EDITORS
Chiun-Sheng Huang – Taipei, Taiwan
Giorgio Secreto – Milan, Italy
Binghe Xu - Beijing, P.R. China
Gastrointestinal and Pancreatic Cancer
Nadir Arber – Tel Aviv, Israel
Stefano Cascinu – Ancona, Italy
Stephen Chan – Hong Kong, China
Massimo Falconi – Ancona, Italy
Robert C. Bast, Jr. – Houston, U.S.A.
Tiziano Maggino – Venice, Italy
Paolo Zola – Turin, Italy
Head and Neck Cancer
Gino Marioni - Padua, Italy
Hepatobiliary Tract Cancer
Etsuno Hatano – Kyoto, Japan
Patrizia Pontisso – Padua, Italy
Massimo Di Maio - Turin, Italy
Giorgio Vittorio Scagliotti - Turin, Italy
Yi-Long Wu - Guangzhou, P.R. China
Marcello Deraco – Milan, Italy
Melanoma and Sarcoma
Carlo Rossi – Padua, Italy
Bertram Wiedenmann – Berlin, Germany
Francesco Boccardo – Genoa, Italy
Valentina Casadio – Meldola, Italy
Rodolfo Montironi – Ancona, Italy
Axel Semjonow – Münster, Germany
Basic and Preclinical Research
Michele De Bortoli – Turin, Italy
Elda Tagliabue – Milan, Italy
Biomarker Discovery (-omics)
Maria Pasic - Toronto, Canada
Pierluigi Mauri – Segrate, Italy
Biomarkers and Imaging Integration
Giuseppe Madeddu – Sassari, Italy
Domenico Rubello – Rovigo, Italy
Marco Salvatore – Naples, Italy
Biospecimens & Biorepositories
Fiorella Guadagni – Rome, Italy
Vivian Barak – Jerusalem, Israel
Mario Correale - Castellana Grotte, Italy
Ruggero Dittadi – Venice, Italy
Rafael Molina – Barcelona, Spain
Mario Plebani – Padua, Italy
Clinical and Molecular Epidemiology
Paolo Bruzzi – Genoa, Italy
Paola Muti - Hamilton, Canada
Marco Zappa – Florence, Italy
Microenvironment & Immunology
Aline Fabricio – Venice, Italy
Valter Gattei – Aviano, Italy
Douglas Noonan – Varese, Italy
Molecular Diagnostics and Pharmacogenomics
Giuseppe Toffoli – Aviano, Italy
Theoni Trangas – Ioannina, Greece
Antonino Carbone – Aviano, Italy
Paola Cassoni – Turin, Italy
Hironobu Sasano - Sendai, Japan
Jennifer A. Byrne – Sydney, Australia
Mårten Fernö – Lund, Sweden
Xichun Hu, Shanghai, P.R. China
Rosella Silvestrini – Milan, Italy
Statistics and Research Methodology
Patrizia Boracchi – Milan, Italy
Luigi Mariani – Milan, Italy
Valter Torri – Milan, Italy
Louis Wing-Cheong Chow - Hong Kong, P.R. China
Stefan Gluck - Miami, U.S.A.