AOMA Summit 2023

Save the date - 2024 AOMA Virtual Summit

We are excited to announce the date for the 2024 Australasian Ocular Melanoma Alliance (AOMA) Virtual Summit. 

The 2023 AOMA Virtual Summit was broadcast to 19 countries, indicating the success of the virtual format in reaching people all around the world who are interested in learning more about ocular melanoma. 

When: Saturday, 15 June 2024
Time: 9am – 5pm AEST
Where: Online via Zoom

Registrations will open in early February 2024. Subscribe to our eNews to learn when registrations open.

Australasia's premier ocular melanoma cross-disciplinary meeting

The 2023 Australasian Ocular Melanoma Alliance (AOMA) Summit was an all-day online meeting on Saturday, 24 June 2023. Videos of the sessions are below.

We had over 200 people register for the event, including ophthalmologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, nurses, medical researchers, patients and consumer advocates. The online format allowed people from all over the world to attend.

This free virtual event included a scientific program and presentations focused on consumers. The diverse program covered laboratory and translational research, clinical trials and registries, diagnosis and clinical management, updates on current and future treatment options, as well as opportunities for consumer and clinician discussion.

International speakers

Roger Olofsson Bagge is a Professor in cancer surgery at University of Gothenburg and a senior consultant surgeon at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden. He has a profound interest in research concerning metastatic uveal melanoma, and has pioneered clinical research in locoregional treatments with isolated hepatic perfusions, lately also combining this with novel immunotherapy. In his lab, he is also exploring the role of extracellular vesicles and their roles in pre-metastatic niche formations in the liver.

Talk: Locoregional therapies for metastatic uveal melanoma

Marlana Orloff MD is an Associate Professor and Medical Oncologist at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. Her focus is on rare melanoma subtypes including mucosal, conjunctival, and uveal melanoma. Her research is centred on investigating the epidemiology of rare melanoma subtypes and the discovery of novel therapies. She works closely with a multidisciplinary team involving ophthalmology, interventional radiology, radiation oncology, and medical oncology that treats patients with uveal melanoma from all over the country.

Talk: Uveal melanoma: Where we are and where we are going

Sara Selig MD MPH, is the Co-Founder and Director of the Melanoma Research Foundation’s CURE OM (Community United for Research and Education in Ocular Melanoma). Dr Selig became involved with the ocular melanoma community when her husband, Dr Gregg Stracks, was diagnosed with the disease in 2006, aged 34. They became fierce advocates for Gregg’s care and the entire ocular melanoma community. Dr Selig continues to be a passionate ocular melanoma advocate and works to accelerate research, promote collaboration, and support patients and caregivers through her leadership of CURE OM. Dr Selig is also an Associate Physician, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, and is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Talk: Uniting the OM community: Keeping our eyes on a cure

Dr Emine Kilic has been working in the Erasmus MC, Ophthalmology Department, the Netherlands since 2009, after completing her training as an ophthalmologist in the same department. Since the foundation of the Rotterdam Ocular Melanoma Study group, Dr Kilic has been involved in clinical and scientific research into eye melanomas as a principal investigator. In 2014 she won a personal grant from the KWF for research into non-invasive detection of high-risk patients and has been an Associate Professor at the ophthalmology department since 2018. Her areas of interest are ocular oncology and vitreoretinal surgery, including endoresections for eye tumours.

Talk: Genomics and prognostication in uveal melanoma

Australian speakers

Professor Helen Rizos is a cancer cell biologist and her work combines genetic analyses of melanoma tumours with functional cell biology in order to understand the role and regulation cellular pathways that influence the development and therapeutic response and resistance in melanoma. Her research group is also interested in the clinical utility of liquid biopsies and is focused on the prognostic and predictive value of circulating tumour DNA in melanoma. She joined the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Human Sciences at Macquarie University in 2014 and was Head of the Department of Biomedical Sciences from 2015-2020.

Talk: Determinants of PKC inhibitor response in uveal melanoma

Associate Professor Peter Gorayski is a radiation oncologist at the Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH), with extensive clinical expertise in treating complex cancers affecting the CNS, head and neck, sarcoma, and genitourinary system. He is also an Associate Professor at the University of South Australia and an Honorary Fellow at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute. At RAH, A/Prof Gorayski leads the implementation of cutting-edge technology applications and offers comparative photon/proton planning services to Australian patients seeking proton therapy through the Medical Treatment Overseas Program (MTOP). He is also a member of the Particle Therapy Special Interest Group at RANZCR and TROG.

Talk: An update on proton therapy in Australia and clinical application

Associate Professor Michele Madigan is a clinician-scientist with an optometry and vision science background, and long-term basic research experience with colleagues at Save Sight Institute, University of Sydney, and Optometry and Vision Science, University of NSW. Her research involves cell biology of human eye melanocytes, naevus, and melanoma, and recently a survey of primary eye care management for patients with choroidal melanocytic tumours. A/Prof Madigan also teaches Vision Science students human eye anatomy and posterior eye diseases, including posterior eye tumours.  

Talk: How do optometrists manage patients with melanocytic choroidal tumours?

Associate Professor Fanfan Zhou is the Director of Master of Pharmacy and the Head of Molecular drug development unit in Sydney Pharmacy School, the University of Sydney. Her group is working on drug discovery and development for cancers and retinal diseases. In particular, her research contributes to the exploration of novel therapeutic targets and development of new therapeutics for human uveal melanoma. Her projects are funded by NHMRC and Australian Vision Research.

Talk: Drug discovery and development in human uveal melanoma

Dr David Sia returned in 2020 with dual-fellowship training in Ocular Oncology and Vitreoretinal Surgery from London, UK and Edmonton, Canada. Dr Sia is currently appointed as Vitreoretinal Specialist and Ocular Oncologist at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, Flinders Medical Centre and Women’s and Children’s Hospital. 

Joint Talk with Dr Amar Gilhotra: Audit of tumour biopsy in South Australia

Dr Amar Gilhotra is a senior consultant pathologist and the Deputy Head of Department of Anatomical Pathology at the Royal Adelaide Hospital. Dr Gilhotra completed her specialist pathology training in South Australia and has been a consultant with SA pathology for the past 10 years. During this time she has gained expertise in the diagnosis of ocular pathologies with particular interest in ocular and cutaneous melanomas. Dr Gilhotra chairs ocular pathology at RAH, is the pathologist for the ocular tumour board as well as oculoplastics multidisciplinary team meetings. With a keen interest in molecular and genetics of melanoma, she is also a member of melanoma MDT group at RAH. She is involved in teaching pathology and ophthalmology registrars. 

Joint Talk with Dr David Sia: Audit of tumour biopsy in South Australia

Dr Aaron Beasley is an early-career postdoctoral researcher in the School of Medical and Health Sciences and the Centre for Precision Health at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia. His research has focused on liquid biopsies in uveal melanoma, with specific focus on circulating tumour cells and circulating tumour DNA.

Talk: The incidence and mortality of conjunctival melanoma in Australia

Jeremy Flanagan is a postgraduate medical student at the University of Melbourne, and visiting student to the Ocular Oncology Research Unit at the Centre for Eye Research Australia. His research interests are improving the accuracy of community uveal melanoma referral pathways, and improving preoperative planning of Ruthenium-106 plaque brachytherapy to treat uveal melanoma.

Talk: Improving Ruthenium-106 brachytherapy for uveal melanoma

Peta Holly is currently the Ocular Oncology Clinical Nurse Consultant at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital as well as a research nurse at the Centre for Eye Research Australia. Her career in ophthalmology and cancer nursing spans nearly 25 years. Prior to becoming an oncology nurse in 2007, she worked in the ophthalmology field as an orthoptist for 10 years. In 2017 she became an ophthalmic oncology nurse at Smilow Cancer Centre, Yale New Haven Hospital, USA. She is motivated by improving patient care outcomes and raising the importance of nursing and allied health support for patients diagnosed with ocular melanoma.

Talk: Development of the Ocular Oncology Clinical Nurse Consultant role and the impact on patient care

Susan Vine was diagnosed with ocular melanoma in 2005 and underwent enucleation (removal of the eye) within two weeks of her diagnosis. She has been supporting other ocular melanoma patients since 2011, and founded the OcuMel Australia and New Zealand Support Group in 2017. 

Talk: Supporting ocular melanoma patients

Michelle Taylor has been an ocular melanoma patient/survivor since June 2016 when she was diagnosed with a large tumour requiring urgent enucleation. In December 2021, Michelle joined the Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials Consumer Advisory Panel to improve her understanding of the clinical trials process and advocate for ocular melanoma patients. Michelle is dedicated to improving the consumer experience for people with melanoma (ocular and skin) and has a strong desire to make a difference to peoples’ lives and to ensure their voices are heard. 

Talk: Two eyes aren’t always better than one!

AOMA Summit session convenors

Associate Professor Rachel Roberts-Thomson is a Medical Oncologist who works at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital and has recently started Cancer Care Adelaide. She specialises in treating patients with melanoma and thoracic malignancies. She has a strong interest in immuno-therapeutics, enjoys clinical trial work, and supervising medical oncology trainees. Her focus is on good patient care.

Professor Anthony Joshua is the Chair of the Australasian Ocular Melanoma Alliance (AOMA) and leads the Australian arm of the global Uveal Melanoma Registry. He is Head of Department, Department of Medical Oncology at the Kinghorn Cancer Centre, St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney and the Clinical Science Lead at the Garvan Medical Research Institute in Sydney. He is also a Professor at the St Vincent’s Clinical School, University of NSW. Prof Joshua’s research interests include circulating tumour DNA, tumour heterogeneity and autophagy.

Dr David Sia returned in 2020 with dual-fellowship training in Ocular Oncology and Vitreoretinal Surgery from London, UK and Edmonton, Canada. Dr Sia is currently appointed as Vitreoretinal Specialist and Ocular Oncologist at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, Flinders Medical Centre and Women’s and Children’s Hospital. 

Prof Michael Brown is a specialist physician in clinical immunology and in medical oncology, a pathologist in laboratory immunology, and has research training in gene therapy and cancer immunotherapy. 

AOMA Summit organising committee

  • Convenor: A/Prof Rachel Roberts-Thompson, Medical Oncologist at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Adelaide 
  • Prof Anthony Joshua, Medical Oncologist at St Vincent’s Private Hospital Sydney, Clinical Science Pillar Director and Lab Head – Oncology Translational Research Laboratory, at Garvan Institute of Medical Research
  • A/Prof Elin Gray, Associate Professor of Cancer Research and Deputy Director at Edith Cowan University.
  • Gabrielle Byars, CEO, Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials
  • Merrin Morrison, Marketing and Communications Manager, Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials
  • Dr Sam Hogarth, Research Development Officer / Clinical Research Associate, Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials

Australasian Ocular Melanoma Alliance (AOMA)

The Australasian Ocular Melanoma Alliance (AOMA) is the peak national body representing medical, para-medical, nursing and consumer representatives who aim to improve the care and treatment of ocular melanoma patients in Australia and around the world.

AOMA members include Ophthalmologists, Surgeons, Medical and Radiation Oncologists, Pathologists, Allied Health, Scientists, Researchers and Consumer Representatives from across Australia and New Zealand. The focus of this extensive collaboration is treatment paradigms for ocular melanoma, and current and future research.

AOMA was founded in 2017 by Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials (MASC Trials) and is a MASC Trials priority research special interest group.

Visit the AOMA website for more information.


Platinum Sponsors

Medison is a global pharma company providing accelerated access to highly innovative therapies to patients in Australia and international markets. Medison created the first multi-regional commercialisation platform, enabling partnerships with leading biotech and pharma companies to help save and improve the lives of those suffering from the most challenging diseases. For more information about Medison Pharma, visit

IDEAYA is a precision medicine oncology company committed to the discovery and development of targeted therapeutics for patient populations selected using molecular diagnostics. Our approach integrates capabilities in identifying and validating translational biomarkers with small molecule drug discovery to select patient populations most likely to benefit from our targeted therapies. IDEAYA is applying its early research and drug discovery capabilities to precision medicine targets, including synthetic lethality – which represents an emerging class of precision medicine targets. For more information:

Silver Sponsors


2022 AOMA Summit resources

Visit the 2022 AOMA Summit webpage for session video recordings.

Uveal Melanoma Registry 
Gathering data to improve clinical practice for uveal melanoma.
Learn more.

Patient information brochures 
By AOMA and Melanoma Institute Australia

AOMA website

Visit the AOMA website


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