Washington, DC, June 12, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- For the first time, International NASH Day (IND), a global awareness and action initiative of the Global Liver Institute (GLI) is endorsed by the major hepatology organizations in both the United States and Europe, the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) and the European Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (EASL). Held annually on June 12 since 2018, IND in 2020 will convene more than 80 partners from around the world to draw attention to the most pressing topics in the fight against nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), the advanced form of chronic, progressive fatty liver disease, which affects more than 115 million people and expected to double by 2030.

Today GLI hosts 6 cutting edge, multi-platform virtual panels featuring clinical, research, and patient experts in liver disease, immunology, nutrition, transplantation, oncology, and public health from the U.S., Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Nigeria, Spain, Sweden, Russia, and the United Kingdom to describe current challenges and collaborate on innovative cross-disciplinary solutions to prevent, identify, treat, and improve the lives of people living with NASH. In addition, partners are creating and amplifying messages on social media, conducting radio media tours, and holding complementary panels, podcasts, and educational workshops in the days surrounding June 12th.

The virtual panels are scheduled to air starting at 7 am EDT through 4:15 pm EDT and will offer diverse perspectives from 30 speakers that will address:

  • NASH as a Global Public Health Challenge Panel
  • Pediatric NASH
  • NASH and Liver Cancer
  • Beyond the Biopsy: The Role of Non-invasive Technologies (NITs) in NASH
  • NASH and Obesity
  • NASH and Metabolic Syndrome

NAFLD (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease) and NASH (nonalcoholic steatohepatitis) occur when fat continues to accumulate in liver cells leading to inflammation and injury to the cells. Symptoms of NASH can be difficult to recognize but can include fatigue and pain in the upper right abdomen. For this reason, people with NASH are often unaware of their liver condition until the disease progresses. NASH is the second leading cause of liver transplant in the US and is predicted to become the leading cause. However, early screening and lifestyle changes can have an impact on NASH progression and potentially reverse the disease in early stages.

Millions of people worldwide are at risk for the potentially fatal liver diseases of NAFLD and its more severe form, NASH. NASH is a major risk factor for many other health conditions. People living with NASH usually have one or more metabolic disorders (such as obesity, type II diabetes, and cardiovascular disease). Thirty-seven percent of people with obesity have NASH, similarly 37% of people with type 2 diabetes also have NASH. Under identified and untreated, NASH may result in serious outcomes including cirrhosis, liver cancer, liver transplant, or death. Now more than ever, the COVID-19 pandemic adds additional risks for those with NASH.

“With the global prevalence of fatty liver disease at 25%, there is an urgent need to accelerate the adoption of the noninvasive technologies which are revolutionizing the field of NASH to more safely and effectively identify, stage, and determine treatment response in this growing number of patients,” stated Zobair Younossi, MD, MPH,  President of Inova Medicine and Chairman of Department of Medicine, Inova Fairfax Medical Campus. “The Global Liver Institute’s International NASH Day plays a significant role in building awareness of screening, NASH education and advocacy, and taking actions that will significantly impact this global epidemic."

“International NASH Day unites, and inspires a collective call to action, which is never more urgent than in 2020 when we are set to yield the harvest of years of diligence and investment in drug and diagnostic technology development and momentum in awareness and policy,” says Donna R. Cryer, JD, Founder and CEO of the Global Liver Institute. “We must make the most of this moment together.”


Get Involved
For additional information on International NASH Day, visit www.international-nash-day.com

Support the IND social media campaign using hashtag #NASHday and Twitter @GlobalLiver.

International NASH Day and its logo is a registered trademark of Global Liver Institute.

About GLI
The Global Liver Institute is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt not-for-profit organization, headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. GLI, the only liver health non-for-profit to operate in the US and Europe, is advocating for liver health to take its place on the global public health agenda commensurate with its prevalence and impact. GLI’s mission is to improve the impact of the liver community by promoting innovation and collaboration and scaling optimal approaches to eradicating liver diseases.
 
For more information on GLI visit www.GlobalLiver.org, follow us on Twitter @GlobalLiver, Facebook @GlobalLiver, and Instagram @globalliverinstitute.

Erica Soueid
Global Liver Institute
301 503 7667
esoueid@globalliver.org