BETHESDA, Md--The PDQ Adult Treatment Editorial Board held its
March meeting in Milan, Italy, so that an international audience
could observe how the board reviews recently published literature
to determine if changes should be made in the information in PDQ.
The experience is expected to aid the European oncology community
in developing its own database, known as START (State-of-the-Art
Oncology in Europe).
In an interview, Susan M. Hubbard, RN, MPA, director of the International
Cancer Information Center (ICIC), the NCI agency responsible for
maintaining PDQ (Physician Data Query), explained how the Milan
meeting came about.
"About a year ago," she said, "Professor J. Gordon
McVie, president of EORTC, and Dr. Alberta Costa, director of
the European School of Oncology, attended a PDQ board meeting
in the US. They suggested that we hold one of our meetings in
Europe to demonstrate to European oncologists how PDQ is updated
and to invite some of the leading investigators to participate."
Cancer specialists identified by the European Institute of Oncology
(EIO) in Milan and the EORTC were invited to join the US board
members in discussing the scientific publications on the agenda,
while other European guests observed.
About 170 European clinical oncolo-gists will review information
to be made available on START, the EIO has announced. The computerized
database should be fully operational by the beginning of 1998.
Its main purpose is to provide evidence-based, state-of-the-art
data about cancer treatment options. It will be designed to take
into consideration the different cultural and treatment approaches
used throughout Europe.