The Education Committee established the Timely Topics Lecture in 1982 at the suggestion of Dr. Nathan Kaufman. It was initially conceived as a lecture by a prominent individual in the field of pathology to address a “timely topic” but has evolved into a sophisticated presentation, generally by a clinician or researcher, whose integrated relationship with pathology moves the discipline forward with contemporary ideas, innovative methods, and futuristic technology. This lecture is regarded as an honor within the USCAP sphere.

The lecturer should be well recognized and respected within the medical community, in general, and by the pathology community; he/she should be capable of giving a lucid and erudite lecture relating to topics of contemporary interest. The lecture is presented during the Annual Meeting of the Academy.

In 1999, the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology chose to honor Dr. Kaufman by renaming this lecture the Nathan Kaufman Timely Topics Lecture. This action was taken in recognition of his distinguished service and invaluable contributions to the Academy, including: prolonged service as first full-time Secretary-Treasurer of USCAP; founding Assistant Editor of Laboratory Investigation and founding Editor of Modern Pathology; institution of the Diagnostic Pathology Course; facilitation of separate incorporation of USCAP and establishment of its Bylaws; formulation of guidelines and procedures for Companion Societies meetings; supervision of lot purchase and construction of a permanent office building for the Academy; establishment of policies and procedures for operations, objectives for educational offerings and terms of reference for the various committees.

Jeroen A.W.M. van der Laak, Ph.D.

2019 Nathan Kaufman Timely Topics Lecture

Jeroen van der Laak is Principle Investigator and Associate Professor of Computational Pathology at the Department of Pathology of the Radboud University Medical Center in Nijmegen, The Netherlands and guest professor at the Center for Medical Image Science and Visualization (CMIV) in Linköping, Sweden. He holds an MSc in computer science and acquired his Ph.D. from the Radboud University in Nijmegen.

His research focuses on the use of machine learning for the analysis of digitized microscopic tissue sections (whole slide images). His research group was among the first to show the large potential of so-called deep learning algorithms for analysis of whole slide images. Further research focused on improvements in deep learning strategies to increase robustness and accuracy, as well as on application of deep learning for various tasks in histopathology. Application areas include: improvement of routine pathology diagnostics, objective quantification of immunohistochemical markers, and study of novel imaging biomarkers for prognostics. He successfully developed models for the analysis of breast and colorectal cancer and for renal transplant biopsies. In 2016 and 2017, he coordinated the highly successful CAMELYON grand challenges. These worldwide competitions resulted in the first publication showing that deep learning can perform on par with pathologists for specific tasks in histopathology. The CAMELYON data set is among the largest and most studied in computational Pathology.

Dr van der Laak co-authored 100 peer-reviewed publications and is member of the editorial boards of Laboratory Investigation and the Journal of Pathology Informatics. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Digital Pathology Association and organizer of sessions at the European Congress of Pathology and the Pathology Visions conference. Dr van der Laak acquired research grants from the European Union, the Dutch government and the Dutch Cancer Society, among others. He collaborates in public-private partnerships, aiming to productize developed algorithms. He is frequently invited as a speaker at international conferences.

Previous Honorees

2018 H. Gilbert Welch
2017 Daniel J. Brat
2016 Eric F. Glassy
2015 Otis W. Brawley
2014 Arul Chinniyan
2013 Christopher Crum
2012 Bogdan Czerniak
2011 Guillermo J. Teamey
2010 Anthony Atala
2009 Todd Golub
2008 Frank McKeon
2007 Steven L. Kunkel
2006 Tyler Jacks
2005 Phillip Sharp
2004 David H. Walker
2003 Irving L. Weissman
2002 Lance Liotta
2001 James Madera
2000 Peter M. Howley
1999 Anthony S. Fauci
1998 David Korn
1997 Raymond White
1996 Anthony Epstein
1995 Eric Stanbridge
1994 Francis Collins
1993 Judah Folkman
1992 French Anderson
1991 Stanley Cohen
1990 Philip Leder
1989 Jay Levy
1988 Cecilia Fenoglio-Preiser
1987 Ronald Weinstein
1986 James Curran
1985 Robert Leader
1984 Arthur Upton & Robert Squire
1983 Edwin Ewing & Thomas Spira