Report on the Young Investigator Workshop on Basic Science and Translational immunology in PSC


On the Young Investigator Workshop on Basic Science and Translational Immunology in PSC on 25 to 26 May in Hamburg, young researchers fruitfully discussed the latest cutting-edge research and ideas at a joint meeting with the international PSC study group.

The structure of this workshop was future-oriented with flash talks of all young participants introducing themselves, their career history and the field of their research showing two slides in only three minutes.

International experts like David Assis from Yale, USA, Fotios Sampaziotis from Cambridge, UK, and Tom Karlsen from Oslo and many more supported the workshop with brilliant talks about the mechanisms of immune tolerance in the liver or about what genetics teach us about PSC. Furthermore, Martine Walmsley from PSC Support UK presented the results of the UK-wide survey on unmet needs as seen from the patient´s perspective.
Altogether four hours of detailed poster discussions including the experts completed this one-and-a-half-day workshop which was rated very valuable and fruitful by both, young investigators as well as the experts, like Tom Karlsen.

He said: “This meeting in Hamburg is almost like a landmark meeting because one of the things we have been struggling with in the international PSC study group is really to get the laboratory-based collaborations up and running. And I am so glad to see not only a lot of laboratory-based translational research going on in PSC but also so many young people doing this research because that means there is a future for this research and I really hope that the young people attending this meeting will come together, work together and thereby maximise the output of their activities in the future. So I am really happy with this meeting.”

The Young Investigator Workshop on Basic Science and Translational Immunology in PSC was organized to motivate young investigators, to foster networking between basic and clinical science as well as foster networking between ERNs involved in rare autoimmune and liver diseases (RARE-LIVER, Transplant Child and ERN RITA), and to share knowledge and pool resources between ERNs. It presented a forum to discuss ongoing research projects between international participants and was a fruitful platform for mentoring young scientists involved in rare disease research.

Christoph Schramm, Hepatologist from ERN RARE-LIVER, Hamburg about the aim of this workshop: “PCS is a disease with a huge unmet need and we organized this workshop to foster science in PSC and also to foster networking between young scientists that just entered research into PSC because we believe that the future of PSC research lies within the young scientist’s community.”