About This Webinar
Learn from leaders in the field about what’s new in pancreatic cancer research. Our presenters will also discuss how the Australian Pancreatic Cancer Genome Initiative is helping uncover the genetics of pancreatic cancer, and how Australian clinical quality registries are improving care and treatment.

This EmpowerED webinar is part of Avner Foundation's Patient and Carer Hub initiative.
  • A/Prof Nick Pavlakis will provide an overview of advances in pancreatic cancer research, with a focus on clinical research
  • Q&A with A/Prof Nick Pavlakis
  • Amber Johns will discuss how the Australian Pancreatic Cancer Genome Initiative is helping uncover the genetics of pancreatic cancer
  • Q&A with Amber Johns
  • Prof John Zalcberg OAM will discuss how Australian clinical quality registries are helping to improve pancreatic cancer care and treatment
  • Q&A with Prof John Zalcberg
Nick Pavlakis
Associate Professor
Associate Professor Nick Pavlakis is a medical oncologist with 20 years of experience in the field of oncology, clinical and translational research, with a special interest in the development of new cancer drugs. Within the specialty of oncology Dr Pavlakis subspecialises & undertakes extensive research mainly in gastrointestinal and thoracic cancers, of which pancreatic cancer is one. He is co-director of the Bill Walsh Cancer Research Lab, and interim Chair of the RNSH Pancreas Cancer Centre, Chair of the RNSH neuroendocrine tumour multidisciplinary team, member of the Upper GI Working Group of the Australasian Gastrointestinal Trials Group (AGITG) and Board Chair of the Thoracic Oncology Group of Australasia (TOGA). He practices at the RNSH, Genesis Care (St Leonards and Frenchs Forest), North Shore Private Hospital and conducts an outreach clinic at Armidale Hospital.
Amber Johns
Amber Johns is an Oncology Research and Program Manager of the Australian Pancreatic Cancer Genome Initiative (APGI). Amber’s research experience has focused on establishing and coordinating the development of complex, novel, large-scale research projects. Amber has clinical experience in pathology and cytology, and has been instrumental in building the APGI as part of Australia’s contribution to the International Cancer Genome Consortium.

Through the APGI, Amber developed and coordinated a national pancreatic cancer biobank network, with international linkage. Amber has the unique blend of clinical, community and scientific experience, which she has successfully applied in various settings with a range of stakeholders. Her unique skill set has been pivotal in the success of not only her own local groups, but providing a platform for cancer research groups across the world to thrive, through her ability to be the link between the research team, the clinical team, and patient and community groups.

Amber has extensive experience in ethical, policy and societal issues in research and currently advises the Federal Government in relation to genomic sequencing and the return of research results.
John Zalcberg
Professor Zalcberg is currently the Head of the Cancer Research Program as well as NHMRC (MRFF) Practitioner Fellow in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University - currently overseeing the establishment and activities of clinical quality registries across various tumour types. He is also the inaugural Tony Charlton Chair of Oncology at Alfred Health as well. He was previously the Director, Division of Cancer Medicine, at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne from 1997 to 2014 as well as their Chief Medical Officer from 2007 to 2013. He is the current Chair of the Australian Clinical Trials Alliance, non-Executive Director of PRAXIS, co-Chair of All.CAN Australia and co-Chair of the COSA Teletrial Initiative. He is immediate past Chair of the Board of AGITG after serving in this role for over 15 years and a past Board Member of Cancer Trials Australia, the Australian Red Cross Blood Service and past Co-Chair of the Cancer Drugs Alliance. Previous positions also include Board Member of the NSW Cancer Institute and President of the Clinical Oncological Society of Australia. He received a Medal of the Order of Australia Award (OAM), the 2011 Cancer Achievement Award from the Medical Oncology Group of Australia and the 2015 Tom Reeve Award for outstanding contribution to cancer care from the Clinical Oncological Society of Australia (COSA). In 2014, the AGITG announced the annual “John Zalcberg OAM Award for Excellence in Australasian Gastro-Intestinal Trials Group (AGITG) Research” in his honour. In 2018, he was awarded the Red Cross Distinguished Service Award. He has over 300 articles published in peer-reviewed journals and has received funding in excess of $60m over the course of his career. He continues an active clinical practice in GI cancer.
Sofia Casbolt
Webinar Host
Sofia Casbolt is Programs Manager at Avner Pancreatic Cancer Foundation.