The newly formed EASL International Liver Foundation is empowering an innovative program pursuing the dream of creating a ‘bioartificial liver’.

There are presently hundreds of thousands of people on the liver transplant waiting list, many of who will sadly 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. But recent technical achievements in stem cell research, tissue engineering and whole organ regeneration and preservation offer potentially powerful solutions to this health crisis.

On May 2, the Foundation, in collaboration with Institut Pasteur, will host a first meeting bringing together world-leading experts in regenerative medicine to turn this revolutionary idea into a clinical reality.

This is just one of the ambitious initiatives the EASL International Liver Foundation was set up to support. The Foundation will revolutionise funding and strategic support for scientists, clinicians and educators in liver health around the world. Beyond that, it is building partnerships and driving collaboration with patients, civil society, governments and the private sector.

Established in Geneva, Switzerland the Foundation is now actively fundraising and supporting projects. “The more money we raise, the more we can help people turn science into doing.” Said Foundation CEO, Stefano Gnes. He continued. “We invite anyone interested in making a difference in liver health to join us and support our efforts.”

“We believe that the Foundation will succeed in achieving its goals as it can rely on the strong commitment of EASL members towards science and education, and the generous support of all who believe in the power of mankind”.

Prof. Massimo Colombo, Chairman of the Foundation

Initiatives include: The micro-elimination of HCV; the development of large scale public awareness campaigns around screening and prevention of liver disease;fostering an evidence-based approach in the assessment of hepatic risks associated with occupational & environmental exposures and educational outreach and capacity building activities  All current and future initiatives aim to deliver on the Foundation’s mission statement: “Everyone deserves a healthy liver”.

Professor Colombo summarized the goals of the Foundation “We will measure the Foundation’s success not simply in financial terms, but in the number of innovations, ideas and initiatives it brings to life.”

Professor Colombo is Chairman of the Board. He is supported by a board of world-renowned Hepatologists:

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Prof. Massimo Colombo

Head, Center of Translational Liver Research. IRCCS Humanitas Rozzano Milan, Chairman of the Board

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Prof. Christian Bréchot

President, Institut Pasteur, France

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Prof. Jeffrey Lazarus

Affiliated Professor CHIP, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen

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Prof. Laurent Castera

Department of Hepatology, Hôpital Beaujon, AP-HP INSERM U773, University of Paris-VII, Secretary General of EASL

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Dr Stefan Wiktor

Professor of Medicine & Public Health, University of Washington, Seattle, USA

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Prof. Jordi Bruix

Head of the BCLC (Hepatic Oncology). Liver Unit. Hospital Clínic. University of Barcelona. IDIBAPS. CIBEREHD.

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Prof. Hans Heinrich Wedemeyer

Dept. of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Endocrinology, Hannover Medical School

 

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Prof. Tom Hemming Karlsen

Full Professor of Internal Medicine, Senior Consultant of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Department of Transplantation Medicine Oslo University Hospital Rikshospitalet and University of Oslo, Vice-Secretary General of EASL

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Prof. Mark Thursz

Professor of Hepatology at Imperial College and Consultant in Hepatology at St Mary’s Hospital, London

They are joined by:
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Prof. Andrea Sironi

Professor of Banking and Finance at Bocconi University, Milan and Chairman of Borsa Italiana SpA

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Benoît Merkt

Partner, Lenz & Staehelin

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Stefano Gnes

Chief Executive Officer, EASL International Liver Foundation

Anyone wishing to make a donation can do so at www.easl-ilf.org/donate