Message from the President

Hello again from the executive team.

Summer is upon us and I have no doubt that some of you will be migrating to the sunshine for some well earned R and R. As many of you will be aware we have made some changes this year.

Firstly, we will soon have a ‘new-look’ website with an updated logo, a fresh and current looking ‘front end’ and a more functional business end. Thank you to all who have contributed to the updated content, especially the chapters and committee leads as well as Lisa, Rachel Johnson, Jan, and Julie, Candi and Charlotte in the secretariat for their efforts with Thumb Design to deliver this.

Congress plans are well underway and, as agreed by council and members at the AGM, our 2017 meeting will have a slightly new feel, with the first day being taken over by 3 themed symposia. We will also run a new style of poster presentations and an MDT plenary session. But more from Lorna in her update.

I would also like to thank all the surgeons who supported and contributed the COS/BTS day symposium at the association of Surgeons meeting in Belfast. It was a great success and showcased the excellent work we do in the field. We were also privileged to have Professor Dorry Segev as our special guest (BJS travelling fellow). His contribution was immense – thank you Dorry.

3-D Printing Could Revolutionise Organ Transplantation

3D Printing

The recent emergence of 3-D printers promises to change the way we fabricate materials. With an advanced 3-D printer, people will someday be able to make almost anything at home with the proper raw materials.

It should be no surprise that doctors have been looking at this cutting-edge technology and experimenting with how they can use it as a tool to advance the practice of medicine.

Their ultimate hope is that they will be able to use a 3-D printer to create fully functioning human organs. When the day comes that the process is truly refined, immunosuppressant drugs will finally be unnecessary because the patient’s own cells would be used in the making of the organ. This would ensure acceptance, and the ability to fabricate organs would mean we would never have a shortage again.

In recent work done jointly by Sydney University and Harvard University, researchers managed to make their way over a significant barrier. The problem was that they couldn’t figure out how to make blood vessels form properly, which would quickly sink a printed organ’s chances at survival. They used a 3-D printer to create tiny capillaries which then led to the formation of blood vessels they were hoping for. Dr. Luiz Bertassoni, the man in charge of the project, cautions people not to jump to the conclusion that we can already start printing fully functioning 3-D organs. While he hopes that we will achieve the technology sooner, he believes it will still be a couple of decades before we advance that far.

Points of business

  • World Transplant Games – The bid for the WTG in 2019 was a closely fought ‘battle’ between Newcastle and Houston. I am pleased to announce the UK (Newcastle) won. Congratulations.
  • Peer review – The Kidney and Kidney/Pancreas Unit peer review is to start in September. The Liver review will follow soon after.
  • CRGs – Future plans have just been announced. I hope some of you applied – as we need transplantation to be well represented.
  • BTS Bursary – The society supported Dr. Emmanuel Liche an overseas surgeon from Zambia. He attended the ASGBI in Belfast and intends to come back and visit some of the Transplant units. I will keep you posted. (See attached photo)
  • The BTS Foundation – Council approved a plan to develop a charitable arm of the BTS to support future charitable deeds the society feels should be supported. These may include supporting research and education and training in developing countries. I hope to give an update soon.
  • BAME support – Kirit Mistry has asked for volunteers from the membership to get involved in supporting BAME activities and rally’s. Please see the attached application form and his contact details if you are able to help.
  • Transplant and Life – This is a ground-breaking programme of events and commissioned artworks to explore organ transplantation and engage with issues of patient care to enrich health education. It will be held at the Hunterian museum of the RCS in London from November. But alongside the exhibition, there is another interesting development which the College want to progress – a module on Transplantation as part of their new on-line PG cert in Surgery. The BTS, with its’ strong training remit, might play a role in developing / planning / delivering this.

Upcoming meetings

  • Thursday 24/11 – Friday 25/11 – Save the date for Living Donor and Ethics
  • ‘Other Meetings’ – BTS Pancreas and Islet Guidelines meeting – 28th September, London hosted by Chris Callaghan
  • Congress 2017 1st-3rd March 2017, HIC, Harrogate:-

Dates for your diaries

  • Thursday 15 September  – Call for papers notification
  • Thursday 15 September – Open congress registration
  • Thursday 15 September – Publish outline program
  • Wednesday 23 – November Call for Papers closes
  • Friday 25/9 to Thursday 8/12  – Review abstracts
  • Monday 12 December – Abstract Review meeting
  • Thursday 15 December – Authors notified
  • Sunday 31 January – Early bird registration ends

Transplant professional looking after unspecified / non-directed altruistic kidney donors?

The BOUnD Study (Barriers and Outcomes to Unspecified Kidney Donation) is looking for nurses, surgeons, nephrologists, independent assessors, living donor co-ordinators and mental health professionals involved in unspecified kidney donation.

Travelling Fellowship 2016



Live Life Give Life (LLGL) is a small charity which focuses on raising awareness of organ donation, funding initiatives to improve the welfare of (and outcome for) patients who need transplants and encouraging people to register as organ donors which, ultimately, saves lives.

The charity is delighted to offer two Travelling Fellowships in 2016 to clinicians, nurses and allied health professionals wishing to make collaborative visits to other institutes.  These fellowships are designed to promote international cooperation and advance training of those in the organ transplantation field.

The LLGL Travelling Fellowships should offset the cost of travel and other expenses to enable transplant medicine professionals to carry out short-term studies in well-established transplant centers, enabling them to learn and use techniques or research approaches/methods not implemented in their host institution.

The maximum grant will be up to £5,000 (GBP) for each Travelling Fellowship.  Fellowships will not be awarded to attend medical/scientific meetings, nor for course fees where training is requested.  The application process is competitive and the board of trustees will review all applications.

To request an application pack, please email:

Please review the rules, eligibility criteria and conditions before applying.