The Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver [APASL]

Monthly News

Message from Steering Committee Member of APASL

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever." - Mahatma Gandhi

In 2004, a new chapter of our society was created in New Delhi, India at the 14th Annual conference of Asian-Pacific Association for The Study of Liver (APASL). Major collective effort was assembled, towards strengthening the role of APASL, not only as the representative but also an opalescent academic Hepatology Society in Asia-Pacific region. Our vision is to build a society similar to but not the same as our counterpart in North America and Europe, viz the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) and the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL). We wish to create a platform where hepatologists and their associates can exchange real-life experiences, new ideas and formulations in the treatment of our patients with liver diseases, without political and administrative constraints. This initiative was goaded by the strong and determined leadership, represented by Professor Shiv Sarin (India), Professor Masao Omata (Japan), Professor Yun Fun Liaw (Taiwan) and a group of heavyweight academic hepatologists. It was then resolved that we need an independent annual scientific conference and to have our own Journal, Hepatology International. With the wide diversity of ethnic, religious, economic, health care and political system in Asia-Pacific region, all of us understood this would not be an easy task. However, one thing was clear and that was merely to “copy” the governance and administrative system from our sister societies, like AASLD and EASL, would fail. It was only after thorough and in-depth discussion, the APASL Constitution was ordained and eventually passed at the 17th APASL annual meeting in Kyoto (2007). This could not have happened without the wisdom of Professor Masao Omata (Japan). Time and again, our society has been steered via the most serpentine and almost impregnable route, with the strict adherence to the Constitution.

Ten years down the road, the deed of APASL via concerted efforts of all the participants is widely eulogized and we should all be pleased to see this development. The attendance and abstracts presented in the annual meeting has shown respectful growth. Single topic conferences covering a wide range of topics in liver diseases had been successfully conducted twice a year. Recently, a School of Hepatology with strong academic faculty was assembled to disseminate state-of-the-art Hepatology knowledge to different part of Asia-Pacific region. In addition, we are now officially recognized by EASL and AASLD as their sole sister society in Asia-Pacific region.

In 2015, we envision another climax at the 24th Annual conference at Istanbul, Turkey, presided by Professor Kadir Dokmeci with the assistant of Professor Hasan Ozkan. The theme of the conference is precisely named the “New Horizons from East to West in Hepatology”. This will represent the furthest stretch of academic influence by APASL to the West from Japan in the East. Currently, APASL has membership from over eighty percent of the approximately sixty countries in the Asia-Pacific region. In the future, we are confident that APASL will continue to thrive by fulfilling its goal of enhancing life-long learning in Hepatology as an instrument of service to our patients with liver diseases.

George KK Lau, M.D.
Steering committee, Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver

World Hepatitis Day 2014


This year, 28th July was the 7th World Hepatitis Day, working in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO).
Take a look at what’s going on this year!
Many activities on WHD have been held all over the world. APASL members are expected to get involved them and to report activities, campaigns etc. to share the experiences and feedbacks.
Following is the report of WHD 2014 by Pakistan.

WHD 2014 Report by Pakistan

WHD observed at SIUT Pakistan
Dr. Zaigham Abbas, Head Department of Hepatogastrioenterology, SIUT

In Pakistan, about 1.5 million citizens i.e. 1 in 13 people are harboring Hepatitis B or C virus. Keeping in view the high prevalence of chronic hepatitis in Pakistan, Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT) arranged an elaborate program for public awareness on 28th July 2014, the World Hepatitis Day (Photo 1). The visitors were interviewed by the volunteers and a comprehensive questionnaire was filled in to identify any risk factors for hepatitis. A detailed awareness video was shown in local language which helped people to identify the risk of hepatitis, its mode of transmission, and learn the preventive measures (photo 2). A Q & A session followed each video session to respond to the visitors’ queries. Visitors were also motivated to play their role in stopping the spread of hepatitis by getting tested and vaccinated and inform others to do so. Along with free blood tests and ultrasound, first dose of vaccine were offered to the attendees. Doctor and dietician counters were available to those who wanted to seek any advice.
The program was well attended and 353 visitors were tested and scanned. The widely circulated newspaper of Pakistan, The Daily Dawn published a special supplement on WHD which was sponsored by SIUT (Photo 3)

Latest Information of APASL 2015 in Istanbul


APASL STC on HCV in Pakistan

Current estimates indicate that 180 million individuals are infected with hepatitis C with more than half of these cases residing in the Asia Pacific region. By studying the entry, translation, replication and eventual release of virus, researchers have identified unique targets of antiviral therapy. The treatment of hepatitis C is evolving rapidly. Interferon free options are now finally available with impressive response rates. These options will be discussed in detail at the forthcoming APASL STC on hepatitis C to be held in Karachi, 17th to 19th October, 2014.

The conference will cover major developments surrounding the treatment of hepatitis C. Due to limited efficacy of interferon and ribavirin based regimens, directly acting antiviral drugs have been added to the make triple regimens. Interferon may not be indicated in special populations like patients with advanced cirrhosis and solid organ transplant patients. The meeting will discuss all oral interferon free regimens. Attention will be paid to discuss ‘difficult to treat’ patients and special populations by case vignettes, symposia and lectures. Preventive aspects of hepatitis C will be discussed in a symposium where leaders from WHO, World Hepatitis Alliance, CEVHAP and APASL will throw light on hepatitis control programs in the region and policy making according to the WHO four strategic axes. Postgraduate course on Day 1 will concentrate on diagnostics in the liver disease.

We look forward to your participation in this important event at Karachi, the most vibrant city and economic hub of Pakistan. The venue is located on the coast of the Arabian Sea, and provides outstanding facilities for accommodation and conference venues. There is always the opportunity to take in a round of golf on a course which is considered to be one of the prettiest in Pakistan, with stunning views of the sea. Please visit our website

APASL STC on HCV in Pakistan

Dates: October 17-19, 2014

City: Karachi, Pakistan

President: Dr. Zaigham Abbas


APASL STC on HBV in China

Message from Organizer

The Conference You Must Attend in 2014

This is the only few International Conference with the focus on viral hepatitis B in 2014.

The program will involve two tracks - Translational Medicine and Clinical Practice.

Over hundred top experts in the field will be invited to provide a high standard and comprehensive program.

Participants will also have a chance to have in-depth interaction with the editors of the major journals related to hepatology during the Special Course “Data Packaging and Publication: Asking the Editors” on 12 Dec.

Chance for Young Investigators in Asia Pacific Region

The abstract submission system was opened on 30 Apr 2014.

The oral and poster sessions will provide a chance to demonstrate your research findings to the world and ten young investigators will be chosen for “APASL Rising Star Presentation”.

Various awards and grants will be provided to encourage research and assist participants to attend the conference.

A Platform for Co-operation and Sharing

Guangzhou is the largest city in Southern China, it is an international hub that connecting China and the World.

We are expecting 2000 delegates from around the world attending this conference which is the excellent opportunity to link up Chinese doctors and the international colleagues.

With the huge patient database and numerous health workers in China, we believe there will be clinical cases that you will feel interested in but hardly find from other places.

If you are the one working in the field related to hepatology, you should not miss this conference. See you in Guangzhou this December!

Prof. Jinlin Hou
Chairman, APASL STC - 4th HBV Conference

APASL STC on HBV in China

Dates: December 12-14, 2014

City: Guangzhou, China

President: Dr. Jinlin Hou


APASL Future STCs in 2015

In 2015, we APASL will have following single topic conferences.

APASL STC on HCV in India

Date: August 21-23, 2015
City: New Delhi, India
Conference Patron: Dr. S K Sarin
Conference Chairman: Dr. B C Sharma
Conference Secretary: Dr. Manoj Kumar
Website: To be announced.
APASL STC on HBV in Armenia

Date: October 3-5, 2015
City: Yerevan, Armenia
Chairman: Dr. Hasmik Ghazinyan
Website: To be announced.

APASL Future Annual Meetings

2016 APASL Annual Meeting:

Date: February 20-24, 2016
City: Tokyo, Japan
President: Dr. Osamu Yokosuka

2017 APASL Annual Meeting: City: Guangzhou, China

2018 APASL Annual Meeting: City: New Delhi, India

Fellowship Program

It is our pleasure to inform you that we have elected a 2014 fellow successfully and now we are in preparation phase to offer the fellow the best placement for pursuing his career.

The objective of the fellowship is to foster career development by encouraging the beneficial experience of working in a different clinical or research environment in another country in the Asia-Pacific region. These fellowships provide for advanced training in health and medical research in any country in the Asia-Pacific region and enable fellows to work in a clinical environment or on a research project with nominated advisers. We appreciate your generous contributions and support for these APASL fellowships and look forward to a number of high-quality applications for a 2015 fellowship.

An application form can be downloaded by clicking here: fill in and send to the APASL secretariat ( We are looking forward to receiving your application.

There are no restrictions based on nationality. The sponsoring institution with the academic environment to provide adequate support for the proposed project might be suggested by APASL.

Application will be reviewed by APASL Committee members. The decisions of the Committee are final and not subject to appeal.

Related Meetings

The EASL Special Conference: Optimal Management of Hepatitis B Virus Infection will be held on September 25-27, 2014 in Athens, Greece. For more information about the scientific program & registration process, please visit the official website at

For more information about related meetings, please visit the following URL in APASL official website;

If you have any useful information of related meetings, please let us know by sending email to