On 13 September 2017, the Liver Seminars programme kicked off with the lecture “Hepatic Macrophages in Liver Disease” delivered by Frank Tacke, at that time professor of medicine at the University of Aachen (Germany), and presented by Jordi Gracia-Sancho, head of the IDIBAPS Hepatic vascular biology group. The initiative, promoted by Gracia-Sancho and Rafael Bañares, head of hepatology and gastroenterology at the Hospital Gregorio Marañón, was born with the aim of improving the scientific cand medical education of young professionals in the sphere of basic and translational hepatology. Furthermore, it constitutes a meeting point for collaboration and exchange for the international scientific community.
From the very start, the Liver Seminars have been held in a hybrid format. In other words, on an alternate basis, one of the two institutions, IDIBAPS or the Gregorio Marañón Health Research Institute (IISGM), has hosted the in-person sessions, while the other streamed it online. This format, which has become normalised due to the pandemic, represented a new departure during the first years of the programme. In addition to the two organising institutions, the Liver Seminars also receive the support of Gilead, the Spanish Association for Study of the Liver (AEEH) and the Centre for Networked Biomedical Research into Live and Digestive Diseases (CIBEREHD).
On Wednesday 29 June, after 5 years and 37 seminars at the hands of experts of renown and prestige, a special event was held to commemorate the anniversary of the Liver Seminars, with the participation of: Ismael Buño, scientific director of the IISGM, Michela Bertero, director of strategy of IDIBAPS, Raquel Yotti, General Research Secretary of the Ministry of Science and Innovation, Marisa Álvarez, representative of Gilead Spain, José Luis Calleja, president of the AEEH and Jordi Bruix, from the Hospital Clínic and director of the CIBEREHD in 2007, as well as Gracia-Sancho and Bañares. The speakers recognised the success of the seminars, while encouraging the organisers to continue with the programme.
The event concluded with the seminar “Hepatitis delta, from pathogenesis to novel treatment options”, delivered by Heiner Wedemeyer, from the German Center for Infection Research, and presented by Sabela Lens.