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Medicine Matters oncology

University Hospitals Leuven & KU Leuven, Belgium

Eric Van Cutsem, MD, PhD, has been professor at the University of Leuven since 2000. He is head of the division of Digestive Oncology at the University Hospitals Gasthuisberg Leuven (UZ Leuven) and University of Leuven (KUL), a board member of the Department of Oncology at the University of Leuven and was a board member and secretary of the Leuven Cancer Institute (LKI) between 2010 and 2016.

He is a member of the Belgian Royal Academy of Medicine since 2015 and president of the Belgian Foundation Against Cancer since October 2016.

Professor Van Cutsem obtained his medical degree in 1983 from the University of Leuven, specialising in internal medicine and gastroenterology, and was awarded his PhD in 1994. He has a mandate as clinical researcher of the Fund for Scientific Research (FWO) since 2003. Throughout his training he spent several months in England, Switzerland, the USA and the Netherlands  and was involved in both clinical and research projects.

Professor Van Cutsem has published 481 peer-reviewed articles (PubMed – March 2017), 951 articles in WEB OF SCIENCE, Thomson Reuters (H-factor: 97; 43,934 citations – March 2017) and several chapters in books on gastrointestinal cancer. His work has been published in the most respected publications such as the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Lancet Oncology, JAMA, Journal of Clinical Oncology, Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology, Annals of Oncology, European Journal of Cancer, British Journal of Cancer and Gastroenterology. He is coeditor of the reference text book on gastrointestinal cancer: Principles and Practice of Gastrointestinal Oncology: second edition, 2008. He was mentioned in 2013 in Capital (French magazine) as being among the top 3 experts in the world in colon cancer and is mentioned in Thomson Reuters within the 1 % highest impact in his domain ( He also coordinates several European and worldwide trials investigating new drugs for gastrointestinal cancer and serves on many steering committees and advisory boards.

Eric Van Cutsem is a member of several scientific organisations. He is/was a member of the Scientific Program Committee and/or educational committee of ASCO, ASCO-GI cancers symposium, ESMO, UEG and ECCO. He served for ESMO as executive board member 2011 to 2013 and since 2014 has been on the ESMO press committee. He was secretary from 2000 to 2003 and chair of the EORTC-GI group from 2003 to 2007 and has been chairman of PETACC (Pan-European Trials on Adjuvant Colon Cancer) since 2008; he was a board member of the EORTC from 2009 to 2015, president of European Society of Digestive Oncology (ESDO) and is co-chairman of the European Neuro-Endocrine Tumour Society (ENETS) registry.

He was chairman of the governmental colon cancer prevention task force in Flanders, Belgium and was president of BGDO (Belgian Group Digestive Oncology) 2010-2016 and has been past-president since 2016.  He was president of FAPA (Familial Adenomatous Polyposis Association) until 2016 and is now vice-president and a member of the general assembly of Kom tegen Kanker (Flemish Cancer Ligue).  He is medical director of Europacolon (patient advocacy group).

Professor Van Cutsem was the founder (1999) of and is chair of the Scientific Committee of the ESMO GI/ World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer in Barcelona (in partnership with ESMO since 2005), the largest meeting on GI cancer with over 3500 participants.