Lecturers 2017

Palle Bager
Palle Bager is clinical nurse specialist & senior researcher at Department of Hepatology and Gastroenterology at Aarhus University Hospital and associate professor at Aarhus University, Denmark.
He became a Registered Nurse in 1987, added a Diploma in Health Education in 2002, Master of Public Health in 2007 and a PhD degree in 2014.
The topic of his PhD was 'Anaemia and fatigue in patients with IBD or upper GI bleeding'. Anaemia and fatigue are still in focus in his research. Other topics include: IBD nursing, patient participation, outpatient services and health economics.
Dr. Bager has been active in the European Crohn's and Colitis Organisation (ECCO) for several years. Currently he is chair of N-ECCO (Nurses-ECCO).

Christianne Buskens
The Netherlands
Christianne Buskens graduated at the Medical School at the University of Utrecht in 1999. From 2000 until 2003 she worked as a research fellow at the department of surgery, and the department of experimental oncology at the Academic Medical Centre (AMC) in Amsterdam. This resulted in her PhD thesis ´The development of new treatment strategies for oesophageal cancer’, which she defended with distinction in 2004. She was trained as a surgeon from 2003 until 2009 at the AMC, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital (Amsterdam), and Gelre Hospitals (Apeldoorn). After completion of her surgical training, she was granted a fellowship from the Dutch Cancer Organization (KWF) at the department of colorectal surgery in Oxford, United Kingdom. Here, she specialized in proctology and minimally invasive surgery. In January 2012, she became a staff member of the AMC colorectal surgeons group. Nowadays, she combines her clinical work as an IBD surgeon with translational research which is funded by an innovative research incentive grant from The Netherlands organisation for health research and development. Her research lines focus on the role of the appendix in ulcerative colitis, and the the effector functions of (myeloid) immune cells. She also has a masters in clinical epidemiology.

Jean-Frederic Colombel
Jean-Frederic Colombel, MD, was Professor of Medicine and head of Department of Gastroenterology at CHU Lille in France and president of the GETAID (Groupe d’Etudes Theapeutiques des Affections Inflammatoires Digestives), president of ECCO (European Crohn’s and colitis organization) and chair of the International Organization for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IOIBD). He moved to Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York in 2013 to become Director of the Susan and Leonard Feinstein IBD Clinical Center and the Leona and Harry B.Helmsley Charitable Trust IBD center. He is the author or co-author of more than 720 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters. He is Associated Editor of Gastroenterology. His research interests cover all fields of inflammatory bowel disease.

Anthony de Buck Van Overstraeten
Anthony de Buck van Overstraeten graduated as MD at the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. After obtaining his degree in general surgery, he did a 2-year colorectal fellowship both at the University Hospital in Leuven and at the Mount Sinai Hospital (University of Toronto) in Canada. Since 2013 he has been a full staff member at the Department of Abdominal Surgery in Leuven. His scientific work focusses on how to improve surgical techniques in IBD patients. He is performing a PhD thesis on bowel sparing techniques in surgery for Crohn’s disease, using strictureplasties instead of bowel resection. Moreover, minimal invasive surgical techniques in UC surgery are investigated, favouring ‘transanal’ and ‘single port’ access for ileal pouch surgery.
From the summer of 2017 on, he will join the colorectal staff at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto, where he will be a member of the IBD group.

Gunnar Hansson
Gunnar C. Hansson, born 1951
Basic education: Medical School, University of Gothenburg 1970 1976, M.D. (läkarexamen) 1976.
Medical practice - licence: 3 year of clinical practivce in various discipines. Licence in Sweden (legitimerad läkare) 1989
Scientific training: Ph.D. training 1976 - medicine doktorsexamen 1981 Post-doc. Feb.1983-June 1984, National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD., USA. ‘Docent’ in Medical and Physiological Chemistry (Medical Biochemistry) 1983
Full professor of Medical Biochemistry (medicinsk och fysiologisk kemi), Department of Medical Biochemistry, Göteborg University, 1998- present.
Visiting scientist (sabbatical) Mayo Clinic; Scottsdale, Arizona, USA (Sept. 1998-June 1999).
Member of:
• The Royal Society of Arts and Sciences in Gothenburg (KVVS) 2012 –
• The Royal Academy of Sciences (medicine) (KVA) 2015 –

Link to extended CV (pdf)

Charlotte Hedin
Charlotte Hedin comes from Britain and did her medical training at Oxford University and then AT and ST- training in London, principally at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel. She earned her PhD in 2013 at King's College London ("Microbial, immunological, phenotypic and genetic markers of risk: Aspects of Crohn's diseases that are shared by unaffected siblings"). In 2013 she moved to Stockholm with her Swedish husband and three children, which soon became four children. After learning some Swedish she began her post as resident physician in gastroenterology at Karolinska University Hospital in 2014. Since 2017 she has held a clinical post-doc at Karolinska University Hospital and in addition was given a UEG "Rising Star" award. Her research focuses on the role of the gut microbiota in inflammatory bowel disease, and also how the gut microbiota affects the development and function of the human immune system in healthy and diseased individuals.
Tine Jess
Tine Jess
Professor Tine Jess is a distinguished researcher within the field of inflammatory bowel disease. Her carrier took off at Herlev University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark and at the Mayo Clinic, US during years 1999-2004 and later she became Doctor of Medical Science based on a number of highly cited studies on risk of cancer and mortality in IBD. During years 2005-2007, she was co-responsible for creation of a Department of Epidemiology at Novo Nordisk A/S, later she worked as senior researcher with a Female Research Leader Grant from the Danish Council of Independent Research at Institute of Preventive Medicine, and during years 2010-2016, she ran a large and successful research group at Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, conducting clinical epidemiological and pharmaco-epidemiological research within the field of IBD. She has received the UNESCO For Women in Science Award, the UEGW Rising Star Award, a Danish Medal of Honor, she is member and former Vice Chair of the Young Academy of the Royal Danish Society of Science and Letter, and she is former Head of the Epidemiological Committee and board member of the European Crohn Colitis Organization (www.ecco-ibd.org). Professor Jess is now Head of Department of Clinical Epidemiology at Copenhagen University Hospitals.

Sakari Jokiranta
Adj. Prof. T. Sakari Jokiranta graduated as a medical doctor from the University of Helsinki, Finland, in 1995. Already before graduation he had started research work on immunology under supervision of Prof. Seppo Meri in Helsinki. For PhD studies Jokiranta visited Bernhard Nocht Institute in Hamburg, Germany, and defended his PhD thesis in 1999 in Helsinki. Thereafter he worked as a post-doc and senior registrar at the Flinders Medical Centre in Adelaide, Australia. Jokiranta became certified specialist in Clinical Microbiology and Immunology in 2001. He was nominated as the head of monoclonal antibody unit of the Univ. of Helsinki in 2001. After receiving Adjunct Professor status in 2006 at the Univ. of Helsinki he has worked as a senior lecturer and principal investigator leading a research group focused on innate immunity, pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases, and monitoring of immunomodulatory biological drugs. Jokiranta has published approximately 100 peer-reviewed articles and 50 other articles or book chapters.
In addition to the academic work Jokiranta has worked for nearly 20 years in diagnostics of clinical immunology and is currently the Medical Director in a diagnostic laboratory United Medix Laboratories, Ltd. Jokiranta has been in charge of setting up analyses for TNF-alfa blockers and other biologicals in Finland in close collaboration with gastroenterologists, rheumatologists, and dermatologists around the country. Jokiranta is in charge of the widest real-life monitoring of TNF-alfa blockers to date, with more than 5000 samples analyzed for trough levels and more than 3000 samples for anti-drug antibodies. He has given over 50 lectures on biological drugs for clinicians domestically and internationally. In addition, Jokiranta has developed several new methods for clinical diagnostics and is currently head of several ongoing projects on monitoring the use of biological drugs in Finland.

Arthur Kaser
Arthur Kaser is a Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator and University Chair of Gastroenterology at the University of Cambridge. Using a variety of techniques, including complex murine genetic models, his laboratory explores the major biological mechanisms affected by risk genes of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This approach may open up a window to explore the yet unknown environmental factors that trigger disease are responsible for the steep increase in global incidence and prevalence. Arthur’s laboratory has e.g. reported mechanisms of how impaired autophagy and mediators of the unfolded protein response lead to IBD, defining a key pathway of Crohn’s disease pathogenesis. More recently they discovered a novel immunometabolic mechanism that determines risk for Crohn’s disease, leprosy, and systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis. He is clinically qualified and active as a gastroenterologist and helps design and conducts clinical trials on new mechanisms of action in IBD, ranging from experimental medicine phase to proof-of-concept programmes and registration trials. Finally, Arthur leads the new Gastrointestinal Diseases theme of the Cambridge NIHR Biomedical Research Centre.

Edouard Louis
Edouard Louis was born in Belgium, on April 1st 1965. He obtained the title of Medical Doctor with Magna cum laude in June 1990, at the state university of Liège, Belgium. Part of his training in Gastroenterology, was done at the Oxford University, UK (1994-1995). He graduated in June 1996 as a specialist in Gastroenterology. Edouard Louis obtained his Ph.D. in 1996, as a fellow of the National Funds for Scientific Research of Belgium (FNRS), with a work on gastrointestinal immunization with soluble antigens. He obtained his “aggregation” for University teaching in 1999 with a work on the characterisation and genetics of immuno-inflammatory reaction in Crohn’s disease. Edouard Louis was promoted associate Professor of Gastroenterology at Liège University in October 2002 and Senior Research Associate at the National Funds for Scientific Research of Belgium (FNRS) in October 2005. He has been Professor of Gastroenterology and Head of the Gastroenterology department at Liège University hospital since October 2010. His Scientific work contributed to more than 250 papers in international journals (H-Index 2017=53). He has been General Secretary of the Belgian Society of Gastroenterology 2005-2009, President of the Belgian IBD Research group (2008-2011), member of the Scientific Committee of the ECCO (European Crohn and Colitis Organisation) (2010-2013) and Chair of this Scientific Committee (2013-2015). He has been member of the board of the GETAID (groupe d’étude thérapeutique des affections inflammatoires digestives) (2004-ongoing), president of the GETAID (2012-2015) and is currently vice-president of the GETAID (2015-2018).

Bjørn Moum
Bjørn Moum had his Medical degree (MD) in 1981 from the University of Århus, Denmark. He trained in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology in Hospital Østfold and Rikshospitalet and was board certified in 1991. From 1990 until 1996 he combined his clinical consultant job with a PhD doctoral program on clinical epidemiology in inflammatory bowel disease as a work in the IBSEN study, a large inception cohort of more than 800 patients gathered in the south-eastern part of Norway between 1990-94. Furthermore he has been centrally involved in planning and conduction of a European study on IBD from 1991 and up to now. For his and the IBSEN Group he has received several national and international research prices as well as grants from University of Oslo, Regional Foundation for Scientific Research HSØ, Research Price from Hospital Østfold and Humira Price. He is appointed as Professor of Medicine and Gastroenterology at Oslo University Hospital with research focus on clinical epidemiology, genetics and therapies in IBD, reflux disease of the oesophagus and endoscopy cancer palliation. His scientific work has resulted in author or co-authorship on more than 130 peer-reviewed papers and he has been main scientific advisor for 8 PhD candidates. Bjørn Moum has been Board member in the Norwegian Gastroenterology Association 1998-2011 and President 2004-2009. He is a personal elected member of the International Organisation for IBD (IOIBD) and has been National Representative Member of the The European Crohn’s and Colitis Organisation (ECCO). Pubmed citations: 148

Andreas Münch
Andreas Münch, Medical degree from the University Witten/Herdecke in Germany 1998.
Training in internal medicine and gastroenterology at the University Hospital in Linköping, Sweden and since 2010 consultant in gastroenterology.
Experimental studies on mucosal barrier function in collagenous colitis leading to PhD examination in 2010.
Member of the Swedish Organisation for the study of IBD (SOIBD) and Mucosal Inflammation and Infection Center (MIIC), Linköping University with ongoing research in mucosal immunology.
Principal investigator of three European randomized, controlled trails investigating the efficacy of budesonide in microscopic colitis and variant forms.
Initiator and President of the European Microscopic Colitis Group (EMCG) since 2010.

Richard Pollok
Dr Richard Pollok is a consultant physician specialising in Gastroenterology. His clinical interests include general luminal gastroenterology, inflammatory bowel disease, gastrointestinal infection and irritable bowel syndrome.
Dr Pollok qualified at St Bartholomew's Hospital Medical School in 1989. He trained in gastroenterology in north east London and was formerly a Wellcome Trust clinical research fellow at Bart's, where he was awarded his PhD for work in the field of gastrointestinal immunology.
He was appointed an honorary senior lecturer at St George's, University of London and consultant physician at St George's University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in 2002.
He is also an active researcher, and his current areas of interest include non-invasive techniques in the diagnosis of Crohn's disease and ulcerative
colitis, the epidemiology of inflammatory bowel disease and Clostridium difficile infection.

Taina Sipponen
Docent Taina Sipponen works as a Gastroenterologist in Helsinki University Hospital, Finland. She graduated as MD at Helsinki University in1989 and specialised in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology in Helsinki University Hospital. Her PhD on biomarkers and noninvasive monitoring of Crohn’s Disease was approved in Helsinki University in 2004.She has combined clinical work with her research and has been a co-supervisor of one PhD program. Dr. Sipponen has published over 40 peer-reviewed full papers and contributed to Finnish Gastroenterology and Hepatology textbook. She was a National representative in European Crohn’s and Colitis Organisation (ECCO) 2006-2011 and served as a Vice President of the Finnish Society of Gastroenterology 2015-2017 and is the current President ot the Society.
Gert Van Assche
Gert Van Assche, MD, PhD, AGAF, FACG
Head, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University Hospitals Leuven
Professor of Medicine, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Leuven, Belgium
Clinician Adjunct, Department of Medicine, University of Toronto, ON, Canada.
Gert Van Assche is professor of medicine in the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine at the University of Leuven (Belgium). His research focuses on novel therapies in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), fibrogenesis, and mucosal immunology in IBD. Dr. Van Assche is head of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University Hospitals of Leuven, where he also served as clinical operational officer in the executive board until 2015. He is the former chair of the guidelines and of the educational committee of the European Crohn’s and Colitis Organisation.
Dr. Van Assche received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and his medical degree from the University of Leuven. He subsequently trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology in Leuven. From 1994 to 1998, Dr. Van Assche combined his GI fellowship with a doctoral program on regulatory peptides in motility and inflammation in the GI Hormones Lab in Leuven and the Intestinal Diseases Research Program at McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada. From 2012 until 2013 he was Director of Clinical and Translational IBD Research at Mt Sinai Hospital, Toronto and Professor of Medicine at the U of Toronto, ON, Canada and he currently is Clinician Adjunct at the UofT. He has been an invited professor at the U of Michigan, Ann Arbor and the Cleveland Clinic, Lerner Institute. For his research, he received grants and awards from the Flemish Foundation for Scientific Research (FWO Vlaanderen), the Désiré Collen Research Foundation, the Royal Society of Medicine, and the Inbev-Baillet Latour Foundation.
Dr. Van Assche’s scientific work has resulted in authorship or co-authorship of more than 200 peer-reviewed papers. He has been consulting several pharmaceutical and Biotech companies for IBD clinical development programs. He holds a senior clinical research position at the Flemish Foundation for Scientific Research (FWO Vlaanderen).