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Pulmonary Hypertension: Forward Acceleration on the "Right" Side

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Mardi Gomberg-Maitland, MD, MSc
Vice Chair, Pulmonary Hypertension Council

As a growing council within ISHLT we continue to grow in maturity. The Council, under the outstanding leadership of Chair, Robert Frantz, MD (Mayo Clinic, MN), has achieved many of its annual goals. The meeting in Montréal successfully incorporated basic science and clinical pulmonary vascular disease medicine. Our goal for Montréal was to promote cross-council collaboration and to feature the right ventricle and pulmonary arterial hypertension at a Plenary Session. Thanks to our program committee representatives of 2012-2013, we attained this goal.

ISHLT 2013:

First and foremost, the Council commends all presenters of individual research as the quality of the poster and oral presentations continues to rise.

Dr. Marlene Rabinovitch (Stanford University) gave a Plenary session presentation dedicated to Dr. Robyn Barst, a pioneer in the field of PH, in remembrance of her commitment to both the science and the patient. The talk, entitled "BMPR2: From Mutation to Modulation," simplified the complex pathways of pulmonary vascular disease and the role of this pathway not only in familial PAH but in other forms of PAH.

The myriad symposia included sessions on medical and surgical approaches to chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension, lung transplantation in PH, the role of right heart catheterization in MCS patients, and proteomics and inflammatory pathways in PAH.

Finally, our focus on "the right side" continues to expand across specialties and culminated in a plenary session on the right ventricle.

Going back to Cali ... ISHLT San Diego 2014

Leadership: the election for Vice Chair of the PH Council will occur in San Diego, 2014, and the following Council leadership positions will become vacant (to be appointed by the Council chairs): Registries and Databases, Education, Standards and Guidelines, Development, and I2C2. In addition, Dr. Myung Park (University of Maryland) our past chair is now the board liaison and Dr. Raymond Benza (Allegheny General) has rotated off the board.

ISHLT-World PH Consensus Initiative: PH and left heart disease international collaboration: Using the JHLT manuscript on PH and left heart disease as a start with the World Congress consensus from the Conference this year (Nice, France), an esteemed group of internationally recognized clinicians and surgeons with focus on this disease. Over the next year, the three taskforces will identify key gaps in knowledge and research initiatives in the context of heart failure/transplantation and mechanical circulatory support. The updates of this work will be presented at the San Diego meeting as a symposium. The group's publishing goal is to complete this document by the 2015 Master's Academy.


International Research Collaboration Initiative: The PH Council is proposing support for a database to perform focused research on PH topics. An example is imaging of the right ventricle in acute right heart failure and predictors of right ventricular failure post lung/heart transplantation.

Master's Academy: A comprehensive curriculum is complete for a 2015 Nice, France ISHLT. Under the direction of the Education Leadership with Dana McGlothlin, MD (San Francisco) the will continue to be updated in preparation for the meeting. The curriculum focuses on the broad needs of the ISHLT encompassing therapeutics, biomarkers, and diagnostics for all PH: PAH, PH with left heart or lung disease, mechanical support options, and lung transplantation.

Membership and I2C2: The goal of the council is to increase junior faculty membership and responsibility within the council. Collaboration between ISHLT and the Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute (PVRI) is in progress and will initiate at the PVRI meeting in 2014 (Giessen, Germany). In addition, collaborative research efforts with the European Respiratory and Cardiology Societies are in discussion.

Disclosure Statement: The author reports the following conflict of interest information: Consultant / Steering Committee / DSMB: Actelion, Gilead, Medronic, Merck, and Pfizer. The University of Chicago has received money from Actelion, Gilead, Medtronic, and Novartis to support the conduct of clinical trials.