Tackling the NASH epidemic, introducing the NASH-CORE study

July 18, 2017 6:11 pm Published by Leave your thoughts1 Comment% Comments

The global prevalence of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is 25%. It is considered to be endemic in Europe and a major potential threat to public health. Yet it appears to receive very limited attention. EASL International Liver Foundation aims to place the spotlight on NALFD and take the first important step needed to generate a call to action by developing an understanding of what government and key stakeholders such as medical associations and patient groups are currently doing.

The NASH-CORE study, led by Professor Jeffrey Lazarus, will systematically review the relevant policies European countries have in place to address NAFLD and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), the most serious form of NAFLD.
The results of NASH-CORE will be presented in conjunction with the First EASL NAFLD summit, which is being held in Rome, 9-11 November, 2017.

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Supporting Viral Hepatitis elimination in Mongolia

July 18, 2017 11:17 am Published by Leave your thoughts1 Comment% Comments

Mongolia has the world’s highest rate of liver cancer mortality; nearly eight times the global average. The prevalence of chronic viral hepatitis B, C, and D is at endemic level, and constitutes the main reason cause of Mongolia’s world-leading liver cancer mortality rate. To tackle this deadly crisis, the Onom Foundation, Patient and Civil Society Council, Mongolian Gastroenterology Association, and Mongolian Society of Hepatology launched the Hepatitis Prevention, Control, and Elimination (HPCE).

The foundation is collaborating with the Mongolian society of Hepatology, Mongolian Gastroenterology Association, the Onom Foundation and EASL to hold first European Union – Mongolia Hepatology Conference, which will take place on August 17 – 19, 2017 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The conference will bring together clinicians, scientists, and specialists to advance the HPCE Program in Mongolia, and lay the ground work for other countries to follow.

Dr Naranbaatar Dashdorj, Co-Founder and Chair of the Board of the Onom Foundation states: “Mongolia, a champion country in hepatitis elimination, is honored to cooperate with the European Association for the Study of the Liver and EASL International Liver Foundation in achieving the MISSION 2020 of the HPCE Program. Our cooperation not only helps Mongolia to reach its hepatitis elimination goals but also demonstrates to the world that together we can eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030, a goal that was unanimously approved by all 190 member states of the World Health Organization in May of 2016.”

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Elimination of Viral Hepatitis in Chronic Kidney Disease patients: a call to action

July 17, 2017 10:11 pm Published by Leave your thoughts1 Comment% Comments

We are honoured to announce that we have joined forces with the European Renal Association- European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) to bring together expert Hepatologists and Nephrologists to eliminate viral hepatitis among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD).

Professor Michel Jadoul, who is jointly leading this initiative with Professor Stanislas Pol, said “The burden associated with HCV (mortality, morbidity and quality of life) remains substantial in CKD, dialysis and kidney transplant patients . Fortunately, very recent studies extend the dramatic improvement of the treatment of hepatitis C to CKD populations . Thus, there should be no reason for complacency anymore. Success is now at hand, under the partnership of key actors in the field of liver and kidney diseases.”

The initiative will kick-off on November 1st in conjunction with the Kidney Week Meeting in New Orleans. Together, we aim to not only kick-start the call to action but provide the information, training, tools, and strategic guidance to radically alter the prevention and treatment of viral hepatitis in this vulnerable population.

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Best of EASL

February 9, 2017 2:27 pm Published by

Over the course of 2017, part of the Foundation’s educational outreach activities will be delivered through the ‘Best of EASL’ series. Best of EASL delivers lectures given by senior EASL key opinion leaders, as well as, rising stars at partnering conferences around the world. This educational offer, which is now entering its third and final phase of a 3-year pilot program will convert into a series of stand-alone meetings to be organized around the world as of January 1st, 2018. Whether you are from a university hospital, medical society, patient organization, governmental entity or another private organization, the EILF can bring the latest education and science from Europe’s premier hepatology society to your audience.

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Collaboration with partners from the Middle East

February 9, 2017 2:27 pm Published by

The establishment of an appropriate framework for the implementation of scientific advances in hepatology into clinical practice represents a major goal pursued by the EILF. In response to this objective, the Foundation organized a first Middle East Forum in Paris in September 2016 entitled ‘Revisiting Unmet Needs in the Diagnosis and Management of Hepatitis C Virus in the Middle East and North Africa Region’.

The Forum, which was attended by nineteen key opinion leaders representing eight countries from the Middle East, provided the first dedicated platform bringing together experts from the Middle East and EASL. The output of the meeting highlighted a number of key areas for potential collaboration including:

  • The review of clinical practice guidelines;
  • The establishment of a series of educational courses featuring state of the art lectures and clinical case discussions delivered by Senior EASL Key Opinion leaders and rising stars; and
  • The development of a liver transplantation exchange program taking place at Europe’s leading centers

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Viral hepatitis elimination program: taking the Micro-elimination path

February 9, 2017 2:24 pm Published by

The micro-elimination of HCV is the complete reduction of HCV infection to zero in targeted populations (e.g. PLHIV, prisoners, haemophiliacs), settings (e.g. hospitals), or limited geographic areas (e.g. Iceland). Substantial steps toward micro-elimination have already been undertaken in most high-income countries, typically focused on those with advanced liver disease. Ireland, for example, has effectively eradicated HCV in its hemophilia-patient population. In some countries, e.g. Australia, the Republic of Georgia, Iceland, Portugal and Spain, broader elimination efforts are well underway. To raise awareness on such accomplishments and boost the conversation surrounding the challenges to expanding HCV micro-elimination, the EILF is hosting a first closed door meeting (invitation only) during The International Liver Congress™ 2017 in view of working on the development of an action plan.

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artificial-liver

Working towards a vision for an artificial liver

February 9, 2017 2:22 pm Published by
Courtesy of Royal Free Hospital, University College London, London, UK (Mazza G et al., Sci Rep 2015;5:13079)

The EASL Foundation is proud to announce a most innovative program aiming at pursuing the dream of creating a ‘bioartificial liver’.

There are presently hundreds thousands of people on the organ wait list, many of whom will die before finding a compatible donor. Even those fortunate enough to receive an organ in time face ongoing medical difficulties, often for the rest of their lives.

Recent technical achievements in stem cell research, tissue engineering and whole organ regeneration and preservation offer potentially powerful solutions to this health crisis. Regenerative medicine is advancing towards the final frontier, i.e. the fabrication of vital organs to definitively solve the organ donor shortage.

However, tissue engineering research and regenerative medicine research is currently underfunded, receiving less than $500 million annually in the U.S. compared to $5 billion for cancer and $2.8 billion for HIV/AIDS. Two foundations in USA are tackling this lack of incentive towards the development of functional and vascularized organs including the liver (https://www.neworgan.org/)

The aim of the EASL Foundation program is to accelerate the academic research in Europe to address key challenges in this field in order to solve the remaining problems to bring this life saving technology to all of the people who desperately need it.

The first human liver scaffold obtained from a donor liver unsuitable for transplantation. This is a key step for providing the 3D structure to be repopulated with human cells and rebuilding a whole functional human liver.

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Developing a liver health public awareness campaign

February 9, 2017 2:21 pm Published by

All of the major causes of liver disease are amenable to prevention and treatment. Nevertheless, the number of people who die from liver disease is still increasing. The EILF believes that the development of a large scale educational program targeting both primary care providers and the public will play a critical role in helping reversing these trends and improving liver health for the greatest number of people. To this end, the Foundation plans to partner with shopping malls, retail chains and large sports stadiums, to display and deliver key liver health messages to the largest audience possible.  

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Shedding new light on occupational liver disease

February 9, 2017 2:19 pm Published by Leave your thoughts1 Comment% Comments

Evidence-based methods are becoming widely used in many areas of healthcare for decision making and validating recommendations in prevention and care delivery. These methods have only been applied to occupational health risks and interventions in a very limited way and there is considerable scope for wider use, especially in the clinical aspects of practice (Carter, 2000 ).

By leveraging skills and capabilities in the EASL scientific community, the EILF intends to raise awareness on the importance of applying an evidence-based approach in the assessment of hepatic risks associated with occupational and environmental exposures. The first initiative of such work would be to promote the development of the first ever EASL clinical practice guidelines on occupational and environmental liver disease

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