EAACI Allergy School on Molecular and Laboratory Asthma report
Ninety-three participants from twenty-six countries were welcomed in Istanbul for the Allergy School on Molecular and Laboratory Asthma. The school was organised by the Asthma Section of EAACI and endorsed by the Turkish National Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, which provided 16 scholarships to its junior members. The school aimed to improve physicians’ knowledge on genetic studies, lung function tests and biomarkers research in asthma.
16 April - 18 April 2015,
Meral Ozguc, Michael Kabesh, John Holloway and Grzegorz Woszczek introduced us to the basics of genetics and how different techniques can be applied to study the complex genetic associations in asthma patients. On the second day, the value of different lung function techniques was discussed. Leif Bjermer, Chair of the Asthma Section, gave an animated lecture and taught us when to use which lung function measurement. Later during the day, several other excellent speakers shared their knowledge about bronchial provocation tests and tools to evaluate biomarkers in the lower airways. An asset of this allergy school were for sure the hands-on sessions. Participants could learn and see how to perform N2 washout, FENO, CalvNO, mannitol provocation and sputum induction. During the allergy school, participants found the opportunity to discuss the outcomes of their most recent studies with seniors and two of them Mateja Žavbi and Inês Mota were awarded with a poster prize. At the end of the second day full of theoretic and practical sessions, participants had the opportunity to taste different types of delicious Turkish dishes at the dinner whilst taking a boat trip on the Bosphorous.
During the last day, different imaging techniques (CT, PET and VP/Spect) were discussed. To conclude, Svetlana Sergejeva presented us with her view on the need for future research in drug development. Is it improving the penetrating of drugs to the small airways or is it sustained release preparations of inhaled steroids enabling once a month treatment? It was clear that nanotechnology will provide the tools to facilitate these developments but one has to be aware of the side-effects that may occur. In the meantime the Tulip festival took place in Istanbul as it does every April and the participants were able to see beautiful tulips in amazing gardens along the Bosphorus coast.
During the closing of the school, Leif Bjermer concluded that the school was a great success, mostly due to excellent speakers and a very interactive audience. A special thanks was addressed to Ömer Kalayci and Arzu Bakirtas, for their dedicated work with organising the school in Istanbul, with strong and professional support from EAACI Headquarter staff.
Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium
Pediatric Allergy and Immunology
Dr Sami Ulus Maternity and Children Training &
Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey