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A Few Thoughts...Looking Back at ISHLT 2016

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Tereza Martinu, MD
Toronto General Hospital
Toronto, ON, Canada

What a whirlwind! It sure seemed like a very busy ISHLT meeting last week. Was it because there were more interesting sessions than ever before? Did it just feel that way because the attendance was so great and the rooms were full and buzzing with excitement? Maybe both? Whichever it may be, this ISHLT meeting was memorable. Vincent Valentine is after me to put some thoughts on paper for this Links Newsletter: here are some that come to mind:

Thought #1 - Pushing the limits: If I had to think of one phrase to represent this ISHLT meeting, it would be "pushing the limits". This theme seemed to permeate every session. Can we further prolong the time between death and donation for DCD organs? Can we restore sicker organs using ex vivo perfusion? Can we recruit more centers for larger multi-center trials? ... I could cite many more examples of limits our society is striving for.

Thought #2 - AMR: Headway has been made in AMR, the 'enfant terrible' of transplantation. New staining methods are being developed to detect cardiac AMR with greater precision. New guidelines have just been published to unify the lung transplant specialists in AMR terminology.

Thought #3 - CLAD: In lung transplantation, we all knew that more data and a unified terminology is needed for chronic lung allograft dysfunction phenotypes. However, I was still amazed at the number of high-quality presentations and studies on CLAD phenotypes, their diagnosis, and prognosis. Our society is well poised at this time to move forward with defining CLAD sub-types. More than ever, this quest for improved terminology is accompanied by a desperate need to identify better treatments for these CLAD sub-types.

Thought #4 - Basic science and translational research: There has been a global effort to further raise interest and support for basic science within ISHLT over the recent years. It was very rewarding to see high attendance at the main basic science / translational research sessions during the conference. Here is a summary of the BSTR symposia:

With this, I invite you to submit some insightful and thought-provoking symposia proposals for the next ISHLT. Looking forward to the 2017 meeting in San Diego! ■

Disclosure Statement: The author has no conflicts of interest to disclose.

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