PARIS, April 12, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --
Designed to educate and activate physicians and potential patients worldwide in the fight against the growing liver disease known as Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH), The NASH Education Program[TM] today expands its global breadth and depth, adding powerful new patient advocacy partners and collaborators from biotechnology as supporters of the 1st international NASH Day (June 12, 2018).
"We are thrilled to see a growing number of stakeholders coming on board with The NASH Education Program's mission to raise awareness about NASH by supporting the 1st International NASH Day on June 12," said Pascaline Clerc, PhD, U.S. Campaign Manager for The NASH Education Program™. "We are looking forward to this 1st global day of action and are calling all stakeholders involved in the fight against NASH to join us and amplify patients' voice."
"NASH is a serious disease with grave, and potentially deadly, outcomes," said Pr. Stephen Harrison, MD, PhD Medical Director of Pinnacle Clinical Research - San Antonio, Texas, USA, and visiting Professor of Hepatology at the Radcliffe Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, UK and member of the scientific committee of The NASH Education Program™. "Yet it works in silence, with most patients not knowing they even have the disease. The NASH Education Program is going to change that, giving physicians and patients the information they need to fight back."
The growing coalition of partners - broadening the program's global reach through massive support for the first-of-its-kind International NASH Day on June 12, 2018 - today includes:
- American Liver Foundation (ALF)
- Global Liver Institute (GLI)
- Fatty Liver Foundation (FLF)
- Cymabay Therapeutics
- Enanta Pharmaceuticals
- Inventiva Pharma
- Health Unlocked
The new members join the program on the second day of the European Association for the Study of the Liver's International Liver Congress, which takes place in Paris from April 11-15 and where NASH is a centerpiece of discussion.
The 1st International NASH Day will convene physicians, scientists and patients across several cities around the world for a day of action against this worldwide public health crisis. It will also centralize rich educational content on a dedicated platform, with interviews involving key stakeholders and the most prominent experts from the NASH ecosystem, as well as informative reports.
"International NASH Day will be this global community's most important event of 2018," says Pr. Sven Francque, MD, PhD, Professor of Hepatology, Head of Department, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Antwerp University Hospital, Antwerp, Belgium, and member of the Scientific Committee of The NASH Education Program™. "We are thrilled to welcome such powerful partners and to grow this coalition so quickly and so broadly around the world and are working to include additional stakeholders to contribute to this global effort."
It is estimated that almost 12 percent of adults in developed countries suffer from NASH - most of them unaware that they do, as NASH is asymptomatic, or "silent," in presenting no symptoms until very late in the disease's damaging trajectory. NASH is also associated with the type 2 diabetes and obesity epidemics, which affect a growing number of adults but also an alarming number of children and teenagers.
The disease is characterized by the accumulation of fat in the liver, along with inflammation and the degeneration of liver cells, and is expected to become the leading cause for liver transplantation in the U.S. by 2020. And while there is no treatment for NASH approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the European Medicines Agency (EMA), there are more than 50 potential treatments in development or clinical review. If diagnosed at an early stage, the disease progression can be managed through therapeutic intervention which includes sustained lifestyle changes.
Tom Nealon, CEO of the American Liver Foundation said: "We are proud to support the International NASH Day on June 12th. This initiative will help many patients better understand their risk as well as their options for the management of the disease and better care."
Donna Cryer, CEO of the Global Liver Institute said: "We are very excited to be a part of this effort. The GLI is a patient driven advocacy organization that promotes innovations and collaborations to advance in liver health. The June 12 1st International NASH Day is the first but truly pivotal step in building a global movement from the ground up."
Wayne Eskridge, President & CEO of the Fatty Liver Foundation added: "The work of The NASH Education Program is right in line with our mission to provide support and education to patients about Fatty Liver Disease and NASH. We are proud to be part of this international effort to raise awareness of this silent disease.
Sujal Shah, President & CEO of Cymabay Therapeutics commented: "The NASH Education Program's goal of educating patients and the medical community on NASH matches with our mission to enhance the quality of healthcare by addressing the needs of patients and advancing medical knowledge."
Sébastien Aguettant, CEO of Delpharm said: "The NASH Education Program is a powerful opportunity to add our expertise to those stakeholders committed to raising awareness and fighting against NASH."
Hugues Tariel, CEO & Co-founder of Diafir commented: "We are thrilled to support The NASH Education Program's initiative to give physicians resources to better understand NASH so that they can diagnose patients at a much earlier stage of the disease."
Dr. Nathalie Adda, Senior VP Clinical & Regulatory, & Chief Medical Officer of Enanta commented: "NASH is a deteriorating liver disease often associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes. We are proud to join the program's initiative to better educate physicians and patients about risk factors for NASH, a disease that is still little known in the general population."
Jean-François Mouney, CEO & Co-founder of GENFIT commented: "There are so many unmet needs within the medical community in charge of clinical management of NASH patients, and also so many stigmas around liver disease making it difficult for NASH patients to talk about their disease and be understood. Therefore we are thrilled to see the growing level of support from our peers to make the 1st International NASH Day a success."
Pierre Broqua, Chief Scientific Officer & Co-founder of Inventiva said: "NASH is more than just a liver disease and awareness on this global public health issue needs to cross medical specialties. The NASH Education Program is the perfect initiative to achieve this goal, and we are proud to support its work, starting with the 1st International NASH Day on June 12, 2018."
Mario Papillon, CEO of BARC commented: "Our industry faces a growing, global demand for NASH services and we are excited to join this coalition of key NASH stakeholders to meet that demand when they most need it."
NASH, or nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, is a metabolic disease characterized by the accumulation of fat in the liver, along with inflammation and the degeneration of liver cells. The disease is associated with long-term risk of progression into diminished liver functionality, leading to non-alcoholic cirrhosis, liver insufficiency and possibly even liver cancer. It also is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular mortality. Its rise is believed to be connected to the type 2 diabetes and obesity epidemics that are growing globally.
About The NASH Education Program[TM]
The non-profit NASH Education Program defines and drives initiatives in collaboration with an independent scientific committee composed of four international key opinion leaders well-known and respected in the hepatic and metabolic disease ecosystems in the U.S. and Europe. To learn more, visit http://www.the-nash-education-program.com. Twitter: @NASH_Education
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SOURCE The NASH Education Program