Institute of Hepatology Visit
by Helen Morement
Following AMMF’s recent agreement to help fund a new study being undertaken by Dr Salvatore Papa’s team at The Institute of Hepatology, London, “Understanding the molecular basis for the development of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma”, I was invited to tour the institute’s facilities and to attend their Journal Club presentation on the institute’s progress to date with this research.
Totally dedicated to liver research of all kinds, the facilities of the institute are impressive. It was refreshing to learn that the research scientists, although working in several different areas, collaborate with each other to ensure that the best possible outcomes are achieved. And it is so encouraging to know that, along with all the other important liver studies that are being undertaken there, cholangiocarcinoma is now on the agenda, too.
The ‘Journal Club’ presentation from Gemma Choy on the work that has been undertaken so far was certainly interesting and thought provoking – covering the complicated paths that need to be taken to set the base lines to study what causes the uncontrolled proliferation of cholangiocytes (the specialised epithelial cells in the liver that form the small bile ducts) that then results in the formation of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma. It was interesting, too, to hear the insightful and helpful comments from those present regarding the ongoing research. There is every hope that as this work progresses it will lead to positive results – and this is something we definitely look forward to.
To read more about Dr Salvatore Papa and his team’s cholangiocarcinoma research project and AMMF’s involvement, click here
The Foundation for Liver Research and the Institute of Hepatology
Founded in 1973, the Foundation for Liver Research has supported research programmes into liver disease for more than thirty years including much of the early pioneering work at King’s College Hospital into liver transplantation and acute liver failure. Professor Roger Williams, CBE*, has been the Director of Research since 1973 and continues in that role.
In 1997 the Foundation established an Institute of Hepatology at University College London under the continuing direction of Professor Williams.
In 2010 the Foundation took over direct management of the Institute and now runs the Institute as an independent research facility. The Institute provides unparalleled opportunities for collaborative scientific programmes and research staff continue to forge links both nationally and internationally and to work with clinical colleagues in the field of liver disease. The Institute is located in central London and immediately adjacent to the premises are major research buildings including the new Institute of Cancer Studies and the new University College London Hospital is just a few minutes walk away. As of June 2011, the Institute of Hepatology is affiliated to Birkbeck College, University of London.
To read more about the Foundation and the Institute of Hepatology, click here
* Professor Roger Williams, CBE, has been at the forefront of liver research for over 30 years. He was involved in the first ever UK liver transplant in 1968. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Science and was awarded: British Association for the Study of the Liver Lifetime Achievement Award 2003; The American Society of Transplantation Senior Achievement Award 2004; the Hans Popper Lifetime Achievement Award 2008; Distinguished Service Award of the International Liver Transplant Society 2011.