Franco Cavalli, born in 1942, was the Scientific Director of the Oncology Institute of Southern Switzerland (IOSI) in Bellinzona (Switzerland) until 2017. He created this institute, which encompasses medical oncology, radio-oncology, nuclear medicine, palliative care, hematology and an important research division. He is currently still President of the Foundation, which manages the Institute of Oncology Research (IOR), located in Bellinzona (Switzerland). He is Professor (Titular professor) of medical oncology at the Medical Faculty in Bern (Switzerland). He has an international reputation for the treatment of and research into malignant lymphoma and new drugs. Every second year he organizes in Lugano the International Conference on Malignant Lymphoma, which is the most important congress on this topic worldwide. He has been very active also in the field of the clinical evaluation of new cancer drugs. The quality of his work has been recognized by the award of 24 national and international prices, including the Petzcoller Award for special dedication to oncology and the ESMO Lifetime Achievement Award. He has published more than 600 articles in peer-reviewed journals and has contributed to many books on cancer, including the Textbook of Medical Oncology, which he edited together with S. Kaye (London), H.H. Hansen (Copenhagen) and D. Armitage (Omaha, Nebraska).
He was Founding Editor and Editor-in-Chief of Annals of Oncology, Europe’s premier medical oncology journal, from 1990 to 2000, and he is on the Editorial Board of several other journals. In 1996, he founded the International Extranodal Lymphoma Study Group (IELSG, www.ielsg.org), which encompasses now more than 200 institutions in 4 continents. IELSG is the leading cooperative group in the field of the biological and clinical studies in the field of extranodal lymphomas.
Franco Cavalli has been President of the Swiss Cancer League and is Chairman of the Scientific Committee of the European School of Oncology (ESO) and of the World Oncology Forum (WOF). He was President of the International Union Against Cancer (UICC) between 2006 and 2008. He has been member of WHO committee of selection of essential medicines for cancers since 2015.
He was member of the Swiss Parliament between 1995 and 2007.