Liver Diseases and the Clinical Laboratory: Arnold O. Beckman Conference

Robert Rej bobrej at cnsvax.albany.edu
Tue Nov 12 10:13:43 EST 1996

Arnold O. Beckman Conference:       
Liver Diseases and the Clinical Laboratory

16-17 February 1997, New Orleans, LA

Sponsored by: American Association for Clinical Chemistry 

(See: http://www.aacc.org/meetings/beckman/beckmangeninfo.html)

        Recent years have brought major advances in the diagnosis and 
treatment of liver diseases, particularly viral hepatitis. Accurate and 
rapid diagnosis is essential for appropriate therapy such as the use of 
alpha interferon and other anti-viral strategies . Recent advances in 
liver disease will be explored at the 1997 A. O. Beckman Conference with 
an emphasis on the laboratory's contribution to diagnosis and treatment. 

        Hepatitis and other liver diseases are prevalent health problems. 
More than 60,000 cases of viral hepatitis are officially reported 
annually in the U.S. and it is estimated over five-times that number of 
cases actually occur. Several hepatotropic viruses are associated with a 
wide spectrum of acute and chronic liver disease syndromes. The mode of 
action and molecular diagnostics of the hepatitis viruses will be 
explored at the Conference with an emphasis on both new and 
well-recognized laboratory techniques. With recent FDA approval of 
hepatitis A vaccine, laboratorians will need to change interpretation of 
hepatitis A tests. For hepatitis C infection, the viral RNA levels can be 
monitored using quantitative PCR, branched chain DNA, or NASBA 

        Laboratorians continue to search for an accurate and reliable 
method to quantify hepatic function and the use of model drugs which are 
metabolized exclusively by the liver by cytochrome P-450 enzyme systems. 
The application and limitation of these fun ction tests will be explored 
and evaluated.  Excess consumption of ethanol is also a well-recognized 
public health issue. Recent advances in the mode of action, 
quantification of hepatic damage, and current therapeutic approaches will 
be discussed. 

        Liver cancer may be induced by viral hepatitis or cirrhosis. The 
pathogenesis and the use of alpha-fetoprotein and other markers for liver 
cancer will be covered. Hemochromatosis and Wilson's disease are 
important inherited disorders causing acute and chronic liver disease. 
The laboratory's role in the recognition, investigation, and screening 
for these diseases will be presented. 

        Liver transplantation has emerged as a treatment for both 
end-stage chronic liver disease and acute liver failure. The important 
role of the laboratory in particular for the selection of patients for 
transplantation and the support of the patien t following liver 
allografts will be covered. 

        With the large number of laboratory tests available for the 
diagnosis and estimating severity of liver diseases, the Conference will 
conclude with an examination of testing algorithms and strategies for the 
cost-effective application of laboratory procedures. 


        A block of rooms is being held for conference attendees at the 
Fairmont Hotel, New Orleans, Louisiana. One of the nation's truly grand 
hotels, the  Fairmont is located in the heart of the city's convention 
and business district, convenient to all of the sightseeing destinations 
and just one block from the world-famous French Quarter. The special 
conference rate is $137 for a single room and $144 for a double room. 
Reservations can be made by calling the Fairmont at 800-527-4727 or 
504-529-7111. Identify yourself as attending the AACC Beckman Conference 
to reserve your room at the sp ecial rate. Rooms must be reserved by 
January 15, 1997, to ensure availability. 

        Official Airlines & Travel Agent 

        AACC and Travel Planners have negotiated special air fares with 
American and Delta Airlines for Arnold O. Beckman Conference attendees. 
To make reservations call Travel Planners at 800-221-3531 or 212-532-1660 
or call the airlines directly; American: 800 -433-1790. Star File #S8387, 
AN#0227AB or Delta: 800-241-6760, File # V0267. Be sure to refer to the 
appropriate file number to obtain the AACC discounts.    Call Toll Free 
800-892-1400 and register today with VISA, MasterCard or American Express 

        For additional information contact

        AACC Customer Service
        2101 L Street, NW, Suite 202, Washington, DC 20037-1526
        800-892-1400 or 202-857-0717
        Fax: 202-887-5093 

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