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    Prevention and treatment of alcoholic liver diseases

    (Inter)national conference for health professionals

    Utrecht, November 21, 2013.


    The liver is very susceptible to the toxic effects of alcohol. Alcohol use can cause fatty liver,

    liver inflammation, liver cirrhosis and increase the risk for liver cancer. Still, there is

    remarkably little public awareness for this severe damage caused by alcohol. Therefore, it is

    important to spread and share the knowledge and experience present in the Netherlands

    with regard to treatment and care for people with these severe symptoms. And exactly this is

    the aim of this conference: present, share and discuss the knowledge and experiences of

    scientists, specialists and other health professionals.

    Thus, the conference “Prevention and treatment of alcoholic liver diseases” intends to

    communicate the complexity of alcohol and the liver, taking into account the new knowledge

    and recent practice experiences. After you have attended the conference, you know more

    about how to recognize, discuss, treat and prevent!

    Key questions that will be addressed are:

    - How does alcohol affect the liver; what are the mechanisms of alcoholic liver diseases? - How extensive is the problem of alcoholic liver diseases in Europe and especially in the


    - How can doctors recognize problematic alcohol use? What is the role of general practitioners?

    - In what way can general hospitals and addiction institutes cooperate effectively? - What are the main interventions for alcohol dependence? Are these interventions


    - How is the current infrastructure in general hospitals for patients with an alcoholic liver disease?

    - Can alcohol clinics for adults be organized to improve this infrastructure?

    Location: Domstad Utrecht

    Chairman: Prof. Dr. Martijn Katan (Professor Emeritus Nutrition, VU University Amsterdam)

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    Plenary morning session (9:30 – 12:45): The liver and our health

    9:30 – 9:45: Prof. Dr. Martijn Katan: Welcome

    9:45 – 10:00: Prof. Dr. Peter Anderson: Alcohol and public health

    10:00 – 10:25: Dr. Nick Sheron: Alcoholic liver diseases: Trends in the UK and Europe

    10:25 – 10:50: Prof. Dr. Mark Thursz: Clinical management and EASL policy work

    Break: 10:50 – 11:15

    11:15 – 11:45: Prof. Dr. Peter Jansen: 'Alcohol, fuel to the fire of metabolism’

    11:45 – 12:15: Prof. Dr. Wim van den Brink: Alcohol dependence

    12:15 – 12:45: Dr. Rob de Man: The role of liver transplantation in the treatment of post

    alcoholic liver cirrhosis

    Lunch break 12:45 – 14:00

    Afternoon sessions (14:00 – 15:15)

    Session A. Early detection of liver diseases

    14:00 – 14:40: Martijn Sijbom MSc. (general practitioner): Current and future practices of

    Dutch general practitioners regarding early detection

    14:40 – 15:15: Dr. Nick Sheron: Southampton Traffic Light Test: Effective early detection

    Sessie B. Motivation to treatment

    14:00 – 14:40: Prof. Dr. Gerard Schippers: How to speak to patients with an alcohol problem:

    the principles of motivational interviewing

    14:40 – 15:15: Dr. Peter Vossenberg (Tactus): The added value of addiction services to the

    liver patient

    Break 15:15 – 15:45

    Plenary closure session (15:45 – 16:30)

    15:45 – 16:00: Dr. Nico van der Lely: Are the experiences with alcohol clinics applicable for

    the care of liver patients?

    16:00 – 16:30: Discussion led by Prof. Dr. Martijn Katan

    Closure 16:30 – 17:00

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    Plenary morning session (9:30 – 12:45)

    9:30 – 9:45: Martijn Kata: Welcome, introduction, discussion with a liver patient

    Martijn B. Katan is emeritus professor of

    nutrition at VU University in Amsterdam. He is a

    member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of

    Sciences, and a highly cited scientist. His

    research focuses on diet, heart disease and

    obesity. Katan is much in demand by the media

    and writes a column for the leading Dutch

    newspaper, NRC-Handelsblad. He has expressed

    concern about the influence of commercial

    interests on nutrition science.

    Topic: Martijn Katan will welcome participants, give an overview of the conference, discuss

    whether moderate alcohol intake is healthy and put questions to Hans Eekman, an alcoholic

    liver patient.

    9:45 – 10:00: Peter Anderson: Alcohol and public health

    Peter Anderson is trained as a general practitioner and

    specialist in public health medicine at the University of

    Oxford and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical

    Medicine. His PhD was on the risk of alcohol and what

    general practitioners can do. He is currently a consultant in

    addictions policy. He was the regional advisor for both

    alcohol and tobacco with the European Office of the World

    Health Organization from 1992 to 2000. Since 2001, he has

    been working as an independent consultant, and has been

    an adviser in the field of addictions to the European

    Commission, the World Health Organization (European

    Regional Office and Headquarters) and many governments

    and governmental bodies around the world. He was the author of a 400 page report for the

    European Commission on Alcohol in Europe, translating the evidence base and experience of

    alcohol policy and prevention programmes for policy makers, programme implementers and

    researchers. Since 2012, Anderson is professor in Substance Use, Policy and Practice at

    Newcastle University in the UK and professor in Alcohol and Health at Maastricht University

    in the Netherlands.

    Topic: Peter Anderson will provide a broad overview of the consequences of alcohol use for

    public health in Europe.

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    10:00 – 10:25: Nick Sheron: Alcoholic liver diseases: Trends in the UK and Europe

    Nick Sheron is an academic, clinical liver

    doctor (hepatologist) at the University of

    Southampton and is the head of the liver

    department of Southampton General

    Hospital. He conducts a lot of research on

    alcohol-related problems. He is co-founder

    of the Alcohol Health Alliance in England,

    an umbrella organization comprising 27

    different organizations with the aim to

    increase the lobby for "evidence-based" policy to reduce the alcohol-related damage in the

    UK. He is also a founding member of the European Alcohol and Health Forum, which aims to

    advise about alcohol strategies in the EU.

    Topic: In his first, plenary presentation, Nick Sheron will give an overview of the topic alcohol

    and the liver, will contrast trends in the UK with Europe and will cover the mechanisms for

    these changes including the role of the industry.

    10:25 – 10:50: Mark Thursz: Clinical management and EASL policy work

    Mark Thursz is Professor of Hepatology at the Imperial College

    in London. In the UK, he is very active in promoting the

    interests of Hepatology as a specialty, and promoting the

    interests of his patients. Thursz was the Secretary of the British

    Association for Study of the Liver (BASL) and chaired the British

    Liver Disease Clinical Interest Group which coordinates

    multicentre clinical research in liver disease across the UK.

    Thursz was EASL Vice-Secretary from 2009 to 2011 and

    Secretary General from 2011 to 2013. In these positions, Thursz

    represented EASL in the European Alcohol and Health Forum

    (EAHF), a European platform in which he discussed the

    challenges ahead to reduce alcohol-related harm. By stressing

    that liver disease is the only top 5 killer in Europe to be on the

    increase, Thursz aimed to improve policy-makers’ awareness of the importance of alcoholic

    liver disease.

    Topic: Mark Thursz will talk about the clinical management of alcoholic liver diseases and will

    discuss EASL’s influence on European policy makers in order to reduce the number of

    alcoholic liver patients.

    Break: 10:50 – 11:15

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    11:15 – 11:45: Peter Jansen: 'Alcohol, fuel to the fire of metabolism’

    Peter Jansen is professor of gastroenterology and hepatology

    at the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam (emeritus

    since March 2011) . His area of expertise includes metabolic,

    genetic, drug-induced and viral liver disease as well as

    hepatocellular carcinoma. Peter Jansen has a long track

    record of serving on governing boards of scientific

    organizations both in Europe and North America. He is active

    in postgraduate teaching and lectured throughout Europe,

    the Middle East, China and Australia. He published over 300

    papers. He serves on advisory boards of multicenter studies

    and is active in advising pharmaceutical companies on the effects of new drugs on the liver.

    Topic: Peter Jansen will present the metabolism of alcohol in the human body and how

    alcohol (and its metabolites) affects the liver (and also the pancreas). In his presentati