Dear colleagues,

On behalf of the Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplant Association we would like to encourage you to participate in our 2019 Election. Your vote can be cast by following the steps below:

  1. Using your IRTA membership log in information, log onto the site.
  2. Click the “IRTA 2019 Election”, you will be taken to the election ballot.
  3. The 2019 election ballot includes photos and biographical sketches of each nominee. Complete your ballot and hit submit.
The deadline to vote is March 1, 2019.

Thank you for being an active member of our Association and we hope to welcome all of you to the 16th International Congress of the IRTA in Paris, France from July 3-6, 2019. Visit for more information.


Gabriel E. Gondolesi, MAAC, FACS
IRTA Secretary-Treasurer


President-Elect (This candidate is running unopposed)
Gabriel E. Gondolesi, Argentina

Dr. Gondolesi has been involved in IRTA since it was named SBTS, back in 2001. From his first participation in the ISBTS, motivated by his mentors, he felt that it was made up of a unique group of motivated people continuously trying to find new answers for a novel and evolving field. Over the last 17 years, Dr. Gondolesi has had the chance to be progressively involved in the core of the association and is active in the Transplant Registry, an important part of IRTA; as an active member, he witnessed and actively participated in some of the last changes done by the association in the field. As a surgeon, he wants all of us to continue being a very pro-active part and core of the IRTA and believes the need to discuss how we will warrant an adequate training for future fellows either from high- or low-income countries. He feels the need to discuss if every country should have Intestinal transplantation or if we should have dedicated centers in each region, and favor cooperation among countries to provide the best care to all patients. For physicians and allied health members, he believes there is a need to work on establishing protocols to work similarly among centers, to improve pre-transplant, transplant and post-transplant care. Part of this role includes bringing together IRTA experts from other areas like nutritionists, endocrinologists, general pediatricians, general surgeons and pediatric surgeons, in order to be able to continue evolving our role in global care and knowledge. He would like to encourage all of us to work on aspects like: promoting education and research, to continue improving technical aspects, as well as early and long-term outcomes of intestinal transplantation. The Global Intestinal Failure Registry needs to be developed He believes we all need to show that results have improved over the last years and therefore indications need to be revisited. Over the last years, he has dedicated his time as Councilor and Secretary/Treasurer. He would like to be sure that every region in the globe is reached by IRTA. We need every country to recognize Intestinal Failure as an orphan disease; this action would drive support for each area, because every country should have Home PN, and Rehabilitation Medicine and Surgery; but few should qualify for Intestinal Transplant. IRTA needs to fund education and research. He would like to devote time and energy to work on most of these goals, but he would like to have dedicated teams for each of them to achieve more. Every IRTA member should become an active member, to help the full council to achieve more. Remember as Dr. René Favaloro said: “Dreaming is a fruitful task”.

Secretary-Treasurer (This candidate is running unopposed)
Jonathan Hind, United Kingdom

Dr Jonathan Hind BMedSci, BM, BS, FRCPCH Consultant in Paediatric Hepatology, Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplantation. Lead for patient safety and governance King’s College Hospital, London. Developer and clinical lead: Healthtouch smartphone app IRTA: Councillor and Intestinal Failure Registry committee member ESPGHAN: European Intestinal Transplant Network member and ESPGHAN mentor BSPGHAN: Nutrition and Intestinal Failure Working Group and e-BANS IF registry RCPCH: Gastroenterology CSAC quality advisor. Dr. Hind is applying to become the secretary/treasurer on the IRTA council in order to continue and progress with the council work he has been involved in for the last four years. The post gives him the opportunity to use the knowledge and experience he has gained in the councillor role, and to continue working with others in the IRTA network. He now has the understanding and skills required for the secretary/treasurer role. During his time on the council he has progressed from transplant to intestinal rehabilitation and transplant, thus becoming a more outward looking association and linking with other national and international societies. He has been committed and active in this development. IRTA has progressed with moving the registry to a sustainable digital footing and are now embarking on a similar pilot for intestinal failure. He has also been involved in the organising and scientific committees for a number of the biannual congresses, gaining experience working with teams around the world, experience he can bring to the secretary/treasurer post. He looks forward to helping grow the society, network, and the scientific output in medical, surgical and allied health fields. His background is in leading the supra-regional intestinal transplantation programme and the intestinal rehabilitation centre at King’s College Hospital in London. This gives him a perspective on both aspects of the association. He is fortunate to work in a strong MDT with allied health professional leaders; and so he has experience working with, and knows the importance of, people from all areas of the field. He has worked on national and international collaborations and has an interest in digital technology – areas where he thinks IRTA, as an association are ideally placed to move the field forwards. He also hopes to work with the future council on expanding the network into underrepresented areas of the world which will no doubt help all of IRTA.


North America (This candidate is running unopposed)
Rodrigo M. Vianna, United States

Rodrigo Vianna, MD, PHD, born in Paraná, Brazil. Graduated in 1994 at the Federal University of Parana. Obtained his PhD Degree in 2014 at Sao Paulo University. He is the Director of the Miami Transplant Institute since January 2013. Prior to this, he has been the Director of Intestinal/Multivisceral transplant at Indiana University. Member of 6 national and international societies, has received more than 20 personal honorary awards. He is the author of more than 150 manuscripts. Dr. Vianna has become one of the top leaders in the field, and one of the most prominent and experienced surgeons, his contributions have helped to improve early and long-term results on every transplanted graft type. His commitment, knowledge and international relationships, will be very helpful for the future development of the association.

Councilor - Europe (One vote in this category)
Palle Bekker Jeppesen, Denmark

Palle Bekker Jeppesen graduated from University Of Copenhagen in 1989, defended Ph.D.-thesis in 1989 and Doctoral Thesis (Intestinal Insufficiency and Failure) in 2003. Clinical Professor at Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen (2014); Affiliate Professor and Head of the Research at the Department of Gastroenterology at Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen (2007), and Affiliate Professor in the Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports at the unit for Clinical and Experimental Nutrition, University of Copenhagen, Denmark (2008). His major research interests include patients with short bowel syndrome and intestinal failure with a focus on novel therapies for their management, rehabilitation and care. Palle has published more than 150 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters within this field, has more than 4000 citations and an H index of above 40.

Loris Pironi, Italy

Dr. Loris Pironi MD’s Clinical and research activities have been dedicated to intestinal failure, home parenteral nutrition and intestinal transplantation. His main achievements have been the coordination of the ESPEN (European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism) Definition and Classification of Intestinal Failure and Guidelines on Chronic Intestinal Failure in adults and the coordination of international multicenter studies on the outcome and the complications of long-term parenteral nutrition and the appropriateness of the indications for intestinal transplantation. He is a Gastroenterology and Clinical Nutrition Consultant, the Director of the Center for Chronic Intestinal Failure in the Department of Digestive System at St. Orsola University Hospital in Bologna, Italy. He is also an Associate Professor of Food and Dietetic Sciences, Head of the Graduate School of Clinical Nutrition, Director of First Cycle Degree of Dietistic in the Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences at the school of Medicine in the University of Bologna.

Councilor - Asia and Middle East/Africa (One vote in this category)
Taizo Hibi, Japan

Dr. Taizo Hibi, MD, PhD, FACS is the Professor and Chairman of the Department of Transplantation and Pediatric Surgery, Kumamoto University Graduate School of Medical Sciences in Japan. He graduated from Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan in 1998. He completed his surgical residency and fellowships at National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo (surgical oncology/hepato-pancreato-biliary surgery), Keio University (hepato-pancreato-biliary surgery/living donor liver and intestinal transplantation), and University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, Florida, U.S. (abdominal organ transplantation: ASTS certification earned in 2012). Dr. Hibi has participated in dozens of intestinal/multivisceral transplantation operations, and in the long-term care of many recipients in both a ward and outpatient setting during his clinical fellowship in Miami. One of his academic achievements in intestinal transplantation is: Hibi T et al. Citrulline level is a potent indicator of acute rejection in the long-term following pediatric intestinal/multivisceral transplantation. Am J Transplant. 2012;12 Suppl 4:S27-32. He played a pivotal role in the living donor intestinal transplantation program at Keio University. He also has extensive clinical experience in abdominal organ transplantation surgery and surgical oncology. Since 2011, he has attended all CIRTA (formerly ISBTS) meetings as a speaker. At CIRTA 2017, he reported the status quo of intestinal transplantation in Japan and presented a summary of best abstracts of the annual congress of the 2017 Japanese Society for Small Bowel Transplantation. Dr. Hibi and his colleagues have proposed the concept of “Transplant Oncology,” a fusion of transplantation medicine and oncology, for eradication of cancer. The four pillars (four E’s) of transplant oncology are: (i) Evolution of multidisciplinary cancer care by integrating liver transplantation, (ii) Extending the limit of hepatobililary and pancreatic surgeries by applying organ transplantation techniques (world’s first report of ex-vivo resection and autotransplantation of the intestine for recurrent duodenal cancer:, (iii) Elucidation of self and non-self-recognition system by linking tumor and transplant immunology, and (iv) Exploration of biomechanisms of disease through cancer immunogenomic studies (Hibi T and Sapisochin G. What is transplant oncology? Surgery. 2018 Nov 21. [Epub ahead of print]. Dr. Hibi has published nearly 100 peer-reviewed articles and is an associate editor of the Journal of Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Sciences and an editorial board member of SURGERY. He serves as a councilor of Japanese Society of Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Surgery, an executive committee member of Japanese Society for Small bowel Transplantation, and the Membership and Communications Committee member of International Liver Transplantation Society.

Hamed Nikoupour, Iran

Dr. Hamed Nikoupour Keylami has been a faculty member of the Shiraz Transplant Center since 2017. Between 2012 and 2014 he was a General Surgeon in Bushehr Province and between 2006 and 2008 he was a General Practitioner in Fars Province. He specializes in Liver and Kidney Transplantation as well as Gastrointestinal Transplantation, HPB Surgery, Cytoreductive Surgery and HIPEC. Education: Intestinal Failure, Nutritional Support, Rehabilitation Certificate, Hospital Universitario, Fundacion Fawaloro, Buenos Aires, Argentina 2017 Abdominal Organ Transplant Surgery Fellowship, Shiraz University of Medical Science 2014-2016 General Surgery Residency, Kermanshah University of Medical Science 2008-2012 Doctor of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Science 1999-2006 Experience: Faculty Member, Shiraz Transplant Center 2017- Present Organ Transplant Surgery Fellow in Shiraz Transplant Center 2014- 2017 General Surgeon in Bushehr Province 2012-2014 General Practitioner in Fars Province 2006-2008 Skills: Liver Transplantation Kidney Transplantation Gastrointestinal Transplantation HPB Surgery Cytoreductive Surgery and HIPEC.



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