The Foundation for Liver and Gastrointestinal Research (SLO) was founded in 1985 as an institution without purpose of gain.
The SLO's mission is to stimulate scientific research in the field of diseases of the liver and the gastrointestinal tract. To this aim it supports research into the prevention and treatment of liver and GI disease, also in the field of liver surgery and liver transplantation, and organizes and facilitates meetings dedicated to new developments. The Foundation undertakes a major part of its activities in Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. Furthermore it is involved in projects partially performed in other centres or countries, typically in a coordinating role.
Overview of activities
The SLO is functioning as an important facilitator of scientific research. It does so through a Clinical Research Bureau founded in 1990. This Bureau has gained a great deal of knowledge and experience on designing and conducting research projects that meet international criteria as described in GCP (Good Clinical Practice), FDA and EU guidelines. The Bureau monitors administrative procedures and maintains contacts with researchers in this country and abroad. In 2011 the Bureau was staffed by a team of 11 experts including project managers, data managers, research nurses and a statistician.
Each project is handled in a consistent manner and an accountant strictly handles the financial administration. The annual Financial Report is audited by KPMG Accountants BV.
The research does not only involve clinical research but also other patient-bound and fundamental research. The SLO has (had) a hand in a large number of national and international studies of which the results are published in leading medical journals, such as the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Annals of Internal Medicine, Gastroenterology, Hepatology, Gut and Journal of Hepatology.
In 2012 a total of 41 persons were appointed in Erasmus MC through the SLO, including assistant professors, Post-Docs, PhD students, lab technicians, research nurses, data managers and administrative staff.
The SLO played a crucial part in setting up and further developing of the Rotterdam Liver Transplantation program. This has made Rotterdam the largest centre for liver transplantation in adults in the Netherlands.
Likewise, it was of great importance in getting a fundamental research program going, among other things by investing in laboratory equipment and recruiting promising scientists. This has resulted in a number of flourishing lines of fundamental research, for example on rejection after liver transplantation and the chronic viral diseases hepatitis B and C.