11h CPDConference

Immune System, Inflammation and Cancer Conference

Two Days for All Nurses and Other Healthcare Professionals

Immune System, Inflammation and Cancer Conference - Melbourne 2020


12 - 13 Mar 2020
Oaks on Market,
60 Market St

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Why Attend

Why is it that our highly crafted immune system, which forms a defensive shield to protect our body and fight infections, can switch and become destructive? The answer may lie in inflammation. As research uncovers new links between the immune system, inflammation and diseases, such as cancer, it’s essential that we, as health professionals, remain up-to-date on advances in modern medicine. Find out:

  • What is inflammation?
  • How does the immune system malfunction?
  • What are the novel therapies in cancer treatment?
  • What does this mean for nurses working in areas, such as critical care and oncology, haematology and palliative care?
Book your place at this conference now!

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Day One

8:30 Registration for Day One


Welcome and Introduction

Ina Rudloff

Autoimmune Diseases – 80 Conditions and Growing

In this introductory session, we will review the vast medical advances that have occurred in understanding autoimmune disease, its course and treatments. It includes:

  • What happens when an autoimmune response occurs?
  • What are the main types of autoimmune diseases?
  • Are they preventable or treatable – a big-picture view?
  • What predictions can be made regarding a person’s susceptibility?
  • Why do treatments work better on some people?
Dr Charis Teh

Mass Cytometry (CyTOF) Technology in Cancer Drug Research

Mass cytometry, a fusion of flow cytometry and elemental mass spectrometry, has been used to study human diseases, including cancer. This session will look at a study which profiled cancer drugs, and includes the following:

  • A brief overview of mass cytometry (CyTOF)
  • Specific actions of cancer drugs on the life/death of cancerous blood cells
  • Why certain patients are sensitive or resistant to particular therapies
10:45 Morning Tea

Andrew Buckle

Linking the Gut, Nutrition and Autoimmune Conditions

Unfortunately, having one autoimmune condition can often lead to other autoimmune conditions developing. In the case of autoimmune thyroid disease, it has a strong connection with coeliac disease. As well, many other autoimmune conditions can cause gastrointestinal manifestations. This session will explain:

  • What is the connection between autoimmune conditions and the gut?
  • How do autoimmune conditions cause overlapping gastrointestinal symptoms?
  • Why does gluten trigger an autoimmune response?
  • The evidence behind practical strategies for management and support, e.g.
    • Dietary changes
    • Prebiotics and probiotics
Andrew Buckle

Coeliac Disease or Gluten Sensitivity?

Approximately 30% of Australians are now following gluten-free or wheat-free diets. In the majority of cases, they do not have a formal medical diagnosis of coeliac disease. Why are people doing this? What is wheat and gluten sensitivity, and how does it differ from coeliac disease? This session provides the latest information on gluten sensitivity and the medical importance of distinguishing coeliac disease from gluten sensitivity. It includes:

  • What is gluten sensitivity?
  • What kinds of symptoms are reported in gluten sensitivity?
  • Why is it important to distinguish coeliac disease from gluten sensitivity?
  • What does the latest research in this field show?
  • What role do FODMAPs or other food components play in apparent gluten or wheat sensitivity?
1:00 Lunch and Networking

Leanne Boase

Immunisation and the Immune System

Immunisations have been protecting people since the discovery of the first vaccine. This session will discuss the relationship between immunisation and the immune system. It includes:

  • Why is it important to be vaccinated for diseases despite the disease being virtually non-existent?
  • Is it possible for vaccines to overwhelm the immune system?
  • What are the nursing considerations for vaccinations in individuals who are immunocompromised?
3:00 Afternoon Tea

Leanne Boase

Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis – Assessment and Considerations

Psoriasis and its associated condition – psoriatic arthritis – can be debilitating and cause permanent damage to those who have them. This session begins to look at:

  • What are the known causes of these conditions and are they preventable?
  • Does early recognition prevent deterioration?
  • What are the characteristics and clinical features of these conditions?
  • Why and how do these conditions affect other body systems?
  • What is the nursing management and considerations?
  • Are there any non-pharmacological approaches?
  • What is the role of the nurse within a multidisciplinary team?
4:30 Close of Day One of Conference

Day Two

9:00 Commencement of Day Two


Paraneoplastic Syndromes in Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer diagnosis in men. This session will explain paraneoplastic syndromes that are commonly associated with prostatic malignancies and includes:

  • What are paraneoplastic syndromes?
  • Why do some paraneoplastic syndromes resemble benign conditions?
  • How can paraneoplastic syndromes be treated?
Melinda Jackson

Sleep, Cognitive And Mood Symptoms In Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: Examining The Role Of The Gut-Brain Axis

Patients with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome may present with multisystemic symptoms. This session will focus on the role of the gut-brain axis in symptoms seen in patients with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) and includes:

  • How can dysfunctions in gut-brain communication result in sleep, neurocognitive and depressive symptoms in persons with ME/CFS?
  • Are there treatments available to address these dysfunctions, or are treatments currently symptom-based?
10:45 Morning Tea

Juli Jaw


A condition that can affect anyone, regardless of age, vasculitis is an inflammation of blood vessels, which may lead to further complications. This session will discuss:

  • What causes vasculitis?
  • What are the different types of vasculitis?
  • Are there any autoimmune disorders related to this condition?
  • How is this condition treated?
12:00 Lunch and Networking

Dr Hamid Hosseini

Cardiovascular Disease: An Autoimmune Risk

Coronary heart disease is closely associated with systemic autoimmune diseases because chronic inflammation is linked to atherosclerosis. As well, some medicines used to treat autoimmune diseases may also play a role in the development of cardiac illness. This session looks at:

  • What happens to the heart and cardiovascular system when autoimmune diseases are present?
  • Who are at risk of cardiovascular diseases from autoimmune causes?
  • Can cardiovascular impacts be prevented?
Cathie Hart

How to Save a Life: Stem Cell Matching

A stem cell transplant, sometimes known as a bone marrow transplant, is more than just matching blood types. This session will explain the following:

  • How is stem cell donor matching done?
  • Why is it harder for people of mixed ethnicity or ethnic minorities to find a match?
  • What can be done in order to facilitate the matching of donors to recipients of stem cell transplants?
3:00 Afternoon Tea


Infection Prevention When Immunosuppression Exists

People with autoimmune diseases are more susceptible to infection due to loss of natural immunity – particularly associated with the long-term use of medicines. The higher the dose of medication and the longer the duration of use, the more the risk will be. What can be done to minimise the risk of infectious diseases in these vulnerable people? This session includes:

  • The prevention of specific bacterial infections
  • Tuberculosis and immunosuppressants
  • Viral infections – herpes, shingles and the like
  • The education of patients
4:30 Close of Conference and Evaluations

The Goal

Need for Program

More and more research continues to reveal the fascinating links between the immune system, inflammation and diseases, such as cancer. The exciting evidence is rapidly being translated into new treatments of diseases. However, an abundance of unproven information and pseudoscience exists in this space. Therefore, it is essential that all health professionals, and particularly nurses, are provided with opportunities to access evidence-based content if health outcomes and health literacy are to remain high.

Purpose of Program

To update health professionals on the emerging conditions associated with the immune system and its response to chronic inflammation and cancer so as to improve health outcomes.

Your learning outcomes:

Appraise various sources of information that relate to inflammation so your knowledge reflects best-available evidence
Provide correct information and education to people in your care, to enhance patient health literacy and adherence to treatment
Promote evidence-based preventative actions for people with health risks to enable them to avoid illness
Identify potential triggers and initiate early interventions to prevent infections in people undergoing novel cancer therapies


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To Be Determined

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Leanne Boase

Leanne Boase is a nurse practitioner with a background in critical care and paediatrics. She currently practices across three GP clinics in Melbourne. She has also built, owned and operated her own GP practice and is now a director of the Prime Medical Property Group, developing and building properties in the health sector. Leanne also does business planning and is the author of 'Medical Business Management', aimed at assisting health professionals to start their own businesses. Leanne is the current president and a fellow of the Australian College of Nurse Practitioners. She works as a casual academic. Her qualifications include a master of nursing (nurse practitioner) and a master of health science (education). Read More

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Hamid Hosseini

Dr Hosseini is a Post-Doctoral Research Officer, who is doing research in cardiovascular diseases at Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute, Alfred Health, GP at Everwell Medical Centre and Aesthetic clinician at Evincy Cosmetic Medical Centre, Melbourne, Australia.  Read More

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Cathie Hart

Cathie Hart has worked in the Tissue Typing / HLA field at the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood for 27 years. During this time she performed all areas of testing, but focussed on the serological sections of the laboratory and helped to develop and manage the area of stem cell compatibility, searching for patients requiring a stem cell transplant and HLA compatible platelet searching. Cathie has also helped develop a national training program and various training materials for the Lifeblood HLA, platelet and neutrophil testing and searching areas. Her role as deputy manager of the Victorian Transplantation and Immunogenetics Service (VTIS) is to manage different areas of the laboratory as well as ensure all accreditation bodies and quality requirements are met. Cathie thoroughly enjoys the work in the ever-changing and evolving laboratory, which has significant clinical involvement for the different patient needs that are supported. Read More

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Charis Teh

The ability to match each cancer to the ideal treatment would be invaluable. Dr Teh is a medical researcher that attempts to do this by identifying the ‘kill switch’ that triggers cell suicide in blood cancers. Using cutting-edge technology, she profiles an extensive network of life and death proteins in cancer cells to discover the most potent druggable killers in blood cancers. A Senior Postdoctoral Fellow at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI), Dr Teh holds a PhD from the ANU, a Master in Public Health from the University of Sydney and a BSc (Hons) from the Australian National University. She completed her postdoctoral training at Stanford University (USA), mastering the mass cytometry (CyTOF) technology and pioneered the use of this technology in Melbourne, Australia. Dr Teh has published 22 papers and secured >$1M of competitive funding. Her 18 prestigious awards include an Australia-America Fulbright Scholarship, a Superstar of STEM, a National Fresh Science Award and a BD Science Communication Award. Dr Teh's growing reputation in the field has resulted in invitations to be a panelist/presenter at Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre Lunchtime Live, Melbourne Health Research Week and Diabetes Australia Expo. She partners with a local primary school to deliver science activities in classroom and hosts Scientific Discovery Tours at her institute. Read More

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Ina Rudloff

Ina completed a PhD in theoretical medicine with a focus on immunology at the Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, Germany, in 2012. In April 2012, she was recruited to the Nold Laboratory at the Ritchie Centre, Hudson Institute of Medical Research and Department of Paediatrics, Monash University. She currently investigates the function and therapeutic potential of novel immune modulators of the interleukin (IL-)1 family, namely IL-1 receptor antagonist and the more recently discovered IL-37 and IL-38. With a strong interest in promoting the translation of basic science into applied interventional immunology, Ina also explores the role of these cytokines in clinically relevant models of autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus, SLE). The ultimate goal of Ina’s research is to influence clinical practice through the development of improved treatments for severe inflammatory conditions. Read More

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Juli Jaw

Dr Juli Jaw is a consultant nephrologist with interests in hypertension, chronic kidney disease, dialysis, transplantation and autoimmune kidney disease. She graduated from The University of Melbourne in 2006 and subsequently undertook nephrology training at Launceston General Hospital, St Vincent’s Hospital and Monash Medical Centre. In 2016, she was awarded a fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Physician. She commenced her PhD research in 2017 in the field of autoimmune kidney disease with a special interest in ANCA (anti-neutrophils cytoplasmic antibodies) associated vasculitis (AAV). She has been actively involved in the clinical and academic teaching of medical students, basic physician and nephrology trainees at Monash Medical Centre. She holds the role of clinical and research fellow at Monash Health and practices at various sites across Victoria. Read More

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Melinda Jackson

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Andrew Buckle

Dr Buckle is a gastroenterologist in Melbourne. He is a member of the Gastroenterology Society of Australia and is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians. Read More


12 - 13 Mar 2020


Oaks on Market
60 Market St
Melbourne VIC,3000


$759.00 (two days)
Book Online Now