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Invited Speakers

Luca Aldrighetti, Italy
Hepatobiliary Surgery Division, Head
San Raffaele Hospital

Luca Aldrighetti, MD, PhD, is Director of the Hepatobiliary and General Surgery Division at San Raffaele Hospital, Milan, Italy. Scientific Director of the Italian Group of Minimally Invasive Liver Surgery (IGoMILS), Coordinator of the Italian Registry of Laparoscopic Liver Resections and member at large of the committee of the International Laparoscopic Liver Society (ILLS). Primary clinical and research activities include surgical oncology topics on colorectal liver metastases, perihilar and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma and hepatocellular carcinoma, techniques for liver resection (including two stage hepatectomies and ALPPS procedures), and minimally invasive hepatobiliary surgery (including major hepatectomies, resection in postero-superior segments and in cirrhosis), with a personal series of more than 2800 liver resections, more than 900 of which performed laparoscopically. He has published more than 300 papers, including many studies on techniques, learning curve and outcomes of laparoscopic liver resections. Current H index (number of publications for which an author has been cited by other authors at least that same number of times) is 40. He continues with teaching and tutoring activities in a number of national and international courses in both open and laparoscopic liver surgery.

Andrew Biankin

Andrew Biankin, UK
Regius Chair of Surgery/Director of Translational Research Centre
University of Glasgow, Institute of Cancer Sciences, Wolfson Wohl Cancer Research Centre

Professor Andrew Biankin is a Clinician Scientist, the Director of the Wolfson Wohl  Cancer Research Centre and Regius Chair of Surgery at the University of Glasgow. His primary scientific focus is on the molecular pathology of pancreatic cancer, the development of novel therapeutic strategies based on molecular phenotyping and the delineation and implementation of biomarkers that facilitate clinical decision-making.

He is Executive Director of the International Cancer Genome Consortium, and its new initiative Accelerating Research in Genomic Oncology (ICGC ARGO).  He is the Chairman and Principal Investigator of UK-wide major initiatives such as Precision-Panc a dynamic therapeutic development platform for pancreatic cancer, which he designed and implemented. He continues to advance oncology therapeutic development through this and other platforms to bring together industrial partners, health care providers and academic institutions.  He has authored over 160 articles in major peer-reviewed journals including seminal works on pancreatic cancer, precision medicine and the clinical management of pancreatic disease and sits on several international expert panels for pancreatic cancer. He is regarded as a key opinion leader and advises government agencies and international cancer organisations. He works closely with industry through appointments to advisory boards and is principal investigator on international clinical trials.

Nicholas Demartines

Nicolas Demartines, Switzerland
Professor of Surgery, and Chairman of the Department for Visceral Surgery
University Hospital of Lausanne (CHUV)

Prof Demartines is Professor of Surgery, and Chairman of the Department for Visceral Surgery at the University Hospital CHUV in Lausanne Switzerland since 2006. His clinical and surgical activity focused on oncologic surgery, mainly hepato-pancreatico-biliary, colorectal surgery, and oesophagus surgery.

His research interest includes the entire perioperative management and minimal invasive approaches especially in oncologic patients. In this field, nutrition and Enhanced Recovery After Surgery programs (ERAS) are now well established, and his department belongs to the international leader in this promising field. Prof Demartines is member of the ERAS Society Executive Board.

Grützmann Portrait 2018

Robert Grützmann, Germany
Professor of Surgery, and Chairman of the Department of Surgery
University Hospital Erlangen

Robert Grützmann is currently full Professor of Surgery and Chairman of the Department of Surgery University Hospital Erlangen Germany. His main interests clinically as well scientifically are pancreatic cancer, cystic and neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed papers.


Morten Hagness, Norway
Consultant Surgeon, Department of Transplantation Medicine
Oslo University Hospital

Morten Hagness, MD, PhD, FEBS is the newly appointed chairman of the Department of Transplantation Surgery at Oslo University Hospital. He is an UEMS certified surgeon in liver-, pancreas- and kidney transplantation as well as procurement. He has worked with the Norwegian program on liver transplantation for colorectal metastasis since 2006 and did his PhD in this field.

Maria Hawkins

Maria Hawkins, UK
Associate Professor, Department of Oncology
University of Oxford

Maria Hawkins is an Associate Professor and has been an MRC Clinical Group Leader in Advanced Radiation Technology at the CRUK/MRC Oxford Institute for Radiation Oncology and an Honorary Consultant Clinical Oncologist at the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust since 2013. Following a research Fellowship at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto Canada, she was a consultant in Clinical Oncology at the Royal Marsden Hospital and The Institute of Cancer Research, conducting research on integrating new technological developments in radiotherapy for gastrointestinal cancers.  She was awarded the 2008 Dr Karol Sicher Fellowship by The Royal College of Radiologists and the 2009 Sylvia Lawler Prize by the Oncology Section of the Royal Society of Medicine.

Frederik Hoogwater

Frederik Hoogwater, the Netherlands
Surgeon, Division of Hepatobiliary Surgery and Liver Transplantation
University Medical Center Groningen

Dr. Frederik JH Hoogwater (1979) studied Medicine at Leiden University, where he graduated in 2005. In 2003 he worked as a research fellow at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center at Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA. In the period 2006-2011 he carried out research into the tumor biology of colorectal liver metastases at Utrecht University. In 2011 he obtained his doctorate with a thesis entitled “Death receptors and colorectal liver metastases” (supervisor Prof. IHM Borel Rinkes). During 2011 -2015 he followed his training as a surgeon at the St. Antonius Hospital in Nieuwegein (trainer Dr. PMNYH Go / Dr. D. Boerma) and from 2015 in the University Medical Center Utrecht (trainer Prof. MR Vriens) with special attention for gastrointestinal and oncological surgery.

Since August 2016 he has followed the fellowship (follow-up training) HPB surgery and Liver transplantation at the UMCG (trainer Prof. RJ Porte).


T. Peter Kingham, USA
Director of Global Cancer Disparity Initiatives
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Peter Kingham was appointed to the staff at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) on the Hepatopancreatobiliary Surgery Service in August, 2010. Prior to my appointment I completed a two-year fellowship in surgical oncology at MSKCC. I am also co-founder of a non-profit organization called Surgeons OverSeas. Since 2001 I have been collaborating with surgical colleagues in sub-Saharan Africa working on surgical oncology and general surgical development projects.

My early research demonstrated the importance of surgery as a component of public health. Now, my research is focused on defining disparities in cancer care, cancer outcomes, surgical oncology training, and introducing new diagnostic tests in low- and middle-income countries. After documenting the differences in the metastatic presentation of patients with colorectal cancer in Nigeria, prospective studies exploring these differences and community based screening projects for colorectal cancer are underway. We have also formed a consortium of investigators in 5 hospitals in Nigeria centered on gastrointestinal malignancies. This project has created a robust clinical, pathologic, and radiologic database with good quality assurance.

I have mentored and trained surgeons from Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, and Malawi. As the Director of Global Cancer Disparity Initiatives at MSKCC I am now expanding our training and research efforts to additional sites in Africa.

David Kwon

David Kwon, South Korea/USA
Director of Laparoscopic Liver Surgery, Department of Surgery and Digestive Disease Institute
Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic

Dr. Kwon is currently working as Director of Laparoscopic Liver Surgery at Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio. He has done all the medical education, surgical residency and fellowship in liver transplantation and hepato-pancreato-biliary surgical oncology in Korea, but has spent much time abroad so is multilingual – speaks English, French, Spanish and Korean. He built up his expertise in living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) and laparoscopic hepatectomy at Samsung Medical Center in Korea where he operated on over 700 LDLTs and over 800 purely laparoscopic liver resection. With extensive experience in both surgical arenas, he started a purely laparoscopic donor program for both pediatric and adult LDLT recipients in May 2013 and established one of the largest laparoscopic liver donor program in the world. He has performed more than 80 cases, including over 70 cases of right hepatectomy for adult recipients. He is also passionate on education and has performed 3 live surgery on purely laparoscopic donor right hepatectomy and 3 right hepatectomy for cancer since 2013. He worked as a faculty in many advanced laparoscopic HPB workshops around the world including IRCAD and helped start 3 living donor liver transplant centers across Asia. He worked as a faculty for a year at Mayo Clinic Rochester before moving to Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland Ohio, USA.

Damian Mole

Damian Mole, UK
Professor of Clinical and Experimental Surgery, Clinical Surgery
University of Edinburgh

Damian’s research is driven by a vision to produce innovative solutions to difficult surgical problems and challenging diseases. His research strategy is based on a critical questioning approach, disease mechanism evaluation and seeking out and building the best teams to discover and deliver these solutions. His current specific challenges are centered on mechanism evaluation and therapies for multiple organ dysfunction triggered by severe acute pancreatitis, and on harnessing the power of regeneration for tissue restitution.

Damian has recently been awarded a Senior Clinical Fellowship from the Medical Research Council to study cell and organ senescence after acute pancreatitis. Damian is also year 3 Director of the ESSQ program

Medizin Innovativ - MedTech Pharma 2014;
Kongress und Ausstellung; 
NCC Ost, NuernbergMesse; Nuernberg; 
2. - 3. Juli 2014; 
Donnerstag, 03.07.2014: 2. Kongresstag; 
Vortragsreihe: Big Data Management & Analytics; 
Prof. Dr. Christian Pilarsky, Leiter Forschungslabor Chirurgie, Klinik und Poliklinik fuer Viszeral-, Thorax- und Gefaeßchirurgie, Universitaetsklinikum Dresden;

Christian Pilarsky, Germany
Professor for Surgical Research, Department of Surgery
University Hospital Erlangen

Professor Christian Pilarsky was born on the 25.11.1964 in Offenbach am Main in Germany. After finishing his training in Biology he obtained a Ph.D from the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main in Molecular Biology. During his study he found his love for cancer research, which he pursued during his career. The first postdoctoral position took him to the Universitätsklinikum Carl Gustav Carus in Dresden where he researched tumor suppressor genes in prostate cancer. This enabled him to move into the private sector where he co-founded metaGen Pharmaceuticals. After successful completion of the sale of the company he chose to intensify his work on pancreatic cancer. Moving back to Dresden he was the head of the pancreatic cancer research laboratory until 2016, when he was appointed as professor for surgical research at the Universitätsklinikum Erlangen, where he is leading the research efforts in the area on pancreatic cancer. In Erlangen his research focus is on CRISPR/Cas9 modification of pancreatic cancer genes and the functional consequences. He is also leading the efforts to build a biobank of samples from patients with pancreatic diseases and accompanying organoids.


Robert Porte, the Netherlands
Head of Hepatobiliary Surgery and Liver Transplant
University Medical Center Groningen

Prof.dr. Robert J. Porte (1962) studied Medicine at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, where he graduated in 1990 (cum laude). In 1989 he obtained his PhD at Erasmus University with a thesis entitled ‘Hemostatic abnormalities in auxiliary and orthotopic liver transplantation’. Between 1990 and 1992 he worked as a conscripted lieutenant physician at the Surgery department of the St. Jozef hospital in Veldhoven. During 1992 – 1995 he trained as a surgeon at the Westeinde Hospital in The Hague (instructor dr. RJJ Koumans) and from 1995 – 1997 at the Leiden University Medical Center (trainer Prof. OT Terpstra). Prof. dr. Porte followed a fellowship (continuation course) Transplantation Surgery at the Duke University Medical Center in Durham, NC, USA from 1997-1998. In 2010 he received the Honorary European Diploma in Transplantation Surgery from the European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS) and the European Board of Surgery (EBS). Since 1998 Prof. Porte has been working as hepato-pancreato-biliary (HPB) and transplant surgeon at the UMCG. In 2007 he was appointed professor of Surgery and appointed as medical head of the field of Hepatobiliary Surgery and Liver Transplantation. Prof. dr. Porte is also chairman of the UMCG-wide working group Liver transplantation and deputy head of department of the department of Surgery.

Keith Roberts

Keith Roberts, UK
Consultant Liver Transplant and HPB Surgeon
University Hospitals Birmingham

Keith Roberts is a HPB and liver transplant surgeon in Birmingham, UK. His research interests surround improving pancreatic cancer pathways, pancreatic fistula and immunology of pancreatic cancer. He is the Treasurer for the Pancreatic Society of GB and Ireland and the Pancreas Specialty Lead for the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

Martin Smith

Martin Smith, South Africa
President, IHPBA and Professor of Surgery
Witwatersrand University

Martin Smith is currently President of the International Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary Association (IHPBA) and the Chairman and Academic Head of the Department of Surgery at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg South Africa. He also serves as the Chief Surgeon and Head of General Surgery at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto South Africa. It is here that he established the HPB unit in 2001 which has grown to be one of the major training HPB units in South Africa. His own interests include pancreatic surgery especially for Chronic Pancreatitis. He is a native Johannes burger and graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in 1983. He was the inaugural President of the Hepato Pancreatico Biliary Association of South Africa established in 2005.  He is also Past President of the European-African HPBA.


Arjun Takhar, UK
Consultant in Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary (HPB) and General Surgery
University Hospitals Southampton NHS Trust

Mr Takhar has a BMBS (bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery) and a BMed Sci (bachelor of medical science) in biochemistry. He completed his basic surgical training in Birmingham, where he worked as an honorary clinical lecturer at the University of Birmingham. Mr Takhar then went on to complete a PhD in gastrointestinal surgery at the University of Nottingham. During his time in formal research, Mr Takhar was shortlisted for the Patey Prize and the SET for Britain Millennium Medal. He completed his higher surgical training predominantly at the Birmingham Liver Unit, specialising in hepatobiliary (relating to the liver, gallbladder and bile ducts), pancreatic and liver transplantation surgery. He then undertook a year-long fellowship in laparoscopic liver surgery under the mentorship of Mr Neil Pierce here at University Hospital Southampton. Mr Takhar was awarded the fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS) in general surgery in 2010 and the certificate of completion of training (CCT) in March 2013.

David Tuveson

David Tuveson, USA
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Cancer Center

David Tuveson completed chemistry at M.I.T., an MD-PhD at Johns Hopkins, medical residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a medical oncology fellowship at Dana-Farber/Harvard. While training, Dr. Tuveson co-developed KIT inhibitors with George Demetri for gastrointestinal stromal tumors, and Kras-dependent mouse cancer models with Tyler Jacks. At the University of Pennsylvania his lab generated the first mouse models of ductal pancreatic cancer, and at the University of Cambridge they identified new therapies.  At Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory they developed organoid models of pancreatic cancer with Hans Clevers, enabling basic discoveries and clinical findings including signatures of “common responders” to chemotherapy.  Dr. Tuveson is the Chief Scientist of the Lustgarten Foundation for pancreatic cancer research, Cancer Center Director and Roy J. Zuckerberg Professor at CSHL, and serves on the BSA of the NCI, the SAC of SU2C and the BoD of AACR. Awards include the Rita Allen, Waldenstrom and Hamdan.

Geertjan van Tienhoven

Geertjan van Tienhoven, The Netherlands
Staff Radiation-Oncologist
The Academic Medical Center (AMC), University of Amsterdam

Geertjan van Tienhoven, MD PhD, is radiation onologist since 1991 and works at the Amsterdam University medical Centers, location AMC, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. His pHD graduation was in 1997. In his career he was involved in several national and international committees such as the National Society of Radiation Oncology (NVRO) board, the Committee for Clinical Comparative Research (CKTO) of the Dutch Cancer Society (KWF), the general assembly of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC), the Board of the European Society of Hyperthermic Oncology (ESHO). He is board member of the Dutch Pancreatic cancer group (DPCG)

He is a clinical trialist. One of his fields of interest is pancreatic cancer, about which he co-authored 20 papers in international journals since 2000. He was involved in several institute-, national- and international clinical studies, reviews and translational studies. He is Principal investigator of the National multicenter PREOPANC study, that randomized upfront surgery plus adjuvant Gemcitabine against preoperative radiochemotherapy  followed by surgery and the remainder of chemotherapy, and presented the preliminary results at ASCO 2018. He is involved in a number of translational projects to that trial and co PI to the PREOPANC-2 trial, investigating preoperative FOLFIRINOX.


Steve Wigmore, UK
Acting Head of Department of Surgery and Professor of Transplantation Surgery
University of Edinburgh

Professor Stephen J Wigmore is currently Acting Head of Department of Surgery, Professor of Transplantation Surgery and Honorary Consultant Surgeon at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.  Professor Wigmore’s interests lie in organ transplantation and liver, pancreas and biliary cancer surgery. His principal research focus is on the cell and molecular biology of organ pre-conditioning and stress protein expression. Other research interests include the Kupffer cell, innate immunity, endotoxin handling and functional assessment of the liver in the context of surgery and transplantation. He is also involved in medical education and distance learning.  Professor Wigmore graduated from King’s College School of Medicine and Dentistry and, after two further years in London, moved to Edinburgh to undertake his basic and higher surgical training with Professor Sir David Carter and Professor James Garden.  He is a former Yamagiwa Yoshida fellow of the UICC and undertook a post-doctoral scholarship at UCSF with Dr Bill Welch. He returned to Edinburgh and was awarded a Wellcome Advanced Fellowship as a Senior Lecturer in Clinical Surgery. He was Chair of Transplantation at the Birmingham Liver Unit prior to returning to Edinburgh in August 2007.


Go Wakabayashi, Japan
Director, Center for Advanced Treatment of Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Diseases
Ageo Central General Hospital

Go Wakabayashi, earned his degrees from Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo Japan. He trained at Department of Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. After working as an Assistant Professor at Department of Surgery, Keio University School of Medicine, he got appointed as Professor and Chairman of Department of Surgery at Iwate Medical University School of Medicine in 2005. From April 2015, he moved back to Tokyo and became Director of Center for Advanced Treatment of HPB Disease, Chief of Surgical Services, and Deputy Director at Ageo Central General Hospital, which is a flagship hospital among 6,000 beds hospital complex near Tokyo. His expertise includes Hepato-Pancreatic Biliary Surgery, liver transplantation, and laparoscopic surgery. He has operated more than 150 cases of living liver transplantation and over 3000 cases of HPB surgery and laparoscopic surgery. His publications are over 300 peer review articles and book chapters related to HPB surgery, liver transplantation, and laparoscopic surgery. He was awarded Gold Medal of Video Olympics at The World Congress of Endoscopic Surgery 1996. He also practices conventional HPB surgery and aggressive surgery as well.  He is the President elect of International Laparoscopic Liver Society and holds numerous important positions in Japanese and international surgical societies

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