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Am Soc Clin Oncol Educ Book. 2012:471-4. doi: 10.14694/EdBook_AM.2012.32.471.

The creation of the international thymic malignancies interest group as a model for rare diseases.

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From the Yale University School of Medicine, Thoracic Surgery, New Haven, CT.


Similar to other orphan diseases, little progress has been made in the past decades in thymic malignancies. A determination to make a difference, despite the challenges facing a rare disease, led to the formation of the International Thymic Malignancies Interest Group (ITMIG) in 2010. This organization has brought together the majority of those focused on the management of thymic malignancies and has built a foundation for scientific collaboration, including consistent use of terms, an international database, and multidisciplinary engagement of clinicians and researchers from around the world. ITMIG has embarked on the development of novel approaches to research particularly suited to a rare condition. ITMIG has gained substantial recognition for the rapid progress that has been made and serves as a model for the advancement of knowledge in a rare disease.

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