2015-12-09 16:04:03 UTC

Unlocking Secrets of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Dec. 9, 2015

A new partnership between AGA and the Chinese Society of Gastroenterology is poised to provide breakthroughs in the understanding of IBD.

In the latest issue of Science & Diplomacy, AGA past president John I. Allen, MD, AGAF, describes how two specialty medical societies — AGA and the Chinese Society of Gastroenterology — recognized an unprecedented opportunity to shed light on a scientific enigma through shared initiatives.

In this article, Dr. Allen and coauthor Dennis L. Shung, MD, explain that Chinese citizens are adopting lifestyles typical of Western populations, which presents a special opportunity to study the impacts of Westernization on environmentally related diseases, beginning with IBD. The annual incidence of IBD is rising in China following a pattern that occurred in the U.S. in the 1950s and in Japan several decades later.

Recognizing this trend, AGA created a China task force — co-chaired by Dr. Allen and Chung Owyang, MD, of the University of Michigan — to explore research opportunities along with the Chinese Society of Gastroenterology. This collaboration focuses on expanding clinical expertise in IBD and gaining basic scientific insights that will translate into improved care in both China and Western countries.

Read the full article in Science & Diplomacy for insights into the potential opportunities of this collaboration and how our two medical organizations might overcome cultural and logistical barriers to success.

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