Dominique Chopin Award: Fostering collaboration and innovation

06 July 2015

The 11th World Congress on Urological Research will take place on 10-12 September in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. Hosted by the EAU Section of Urological Research (ESUR) and the Society for Basic Urologic Research (SBUR), the meeting presents the latest trends in urological research, including molecular diagnostic tools and predictive biomarkers, and tissue engineering. The prestigious Dominique Chopin Award will be presented for the 8th time during the congress as well.

The World Congress seeks to encourage cooperation between younger and more experienced researchers. It is a prime opportunity for students and post-docs to approach possible mentors. It is also an opportunity for both sides of the Atlantic to enhance their ties and cooperate to carry out innovative research.

The meeting also strives to highlight research contributions to basic, translational or clinical urological research. Since 2008, the Dominique Chopin Distinguished Award is presented to a researcher in the field of urology who has contributed significantly to high level urological research. This award is an example of the collaborative and cross-generation approach of the World Congress; it is awarded not only for the research itself, but the recipient must also contribute to the field by mentoring Ph.D. students and post-docs, securing grants, and establishing research networks.

This year’s recipient, Professor Jack Schalken, meets all the requirements, and more. “The work of Professor Schalken in dysregulation of e-cadherin in prostate cancer provided a solid basis for future studies. It may lead to a better understanding of epithelial to mesenchymal transition during prostate cancer progression,” says Zoran Culig, ESUR Chair. Also, Schalken has made great contributions in the field of tumour markers. Particular highlights are his work on PCa3 and TMPRSS:ERG fusion.

Schalken’s collaboration with younger urologists is also worth highlighting. As a project leader of PRIMA (Prostate Cancer Integrated Management Approach), he has helped provide a unique research platform for students and post-docs. And the groundwork of PRIMA “has helped other consortiums to identify new targets and improve conventional therapies for prostate cancer,” says Culig.

The work of this year’s Dominique Chopin Distinguished Award recipient has greatly contributed to put Nijmegen on the map, at the forefront of translational projects carried out by experienced researchers, urologists and residents. Nijmegen is a world-class centre of urological research, and Jack Schalken’s contribution to the establishment of one of the premier urology research departments in Europe will be highlighted during the meeting.