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Board of Directors

2020-2021 Board of Directors

Officers & Executive Committee

President - David Watson

David Watson
Flinders Medical Centre
Bedford Park, Australia

Professor David Watson is a Matthew Flinders Distinguished Professor at Flinders University, Head of the Flinders University Department of Surgery and an Oesophageal and Gastric Surgeon at Flinders Medical Centre, in Adelaide, South Australia. His clinical and research interests include gastro-esophageal reflux and esophago-gastric cancer, and he leads molecular biology and population health research groups which are working to improve early detection and prevention of esophago-gastric cancer. He is a Senior Editor of the ANZ Journal of Surgery, and a member of the Editorial Boards for many international journals including the British Journal of Surgery, Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery, and World Journal of Surgery.

Professor Watson has published more than 300 research papers, and more than 40 book chapters. He is a recipient of the highest research award from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, the John Mitchell Crouch Fellowship, has been awarded a prestigious James IV Travelling Fellowship, and he has been elected to Fellowship of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

President-Elect - Sheila K. Krishnadath

Sheila K. Krishnadath
Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam
Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Prof . Sheila K. Krishnadath is a gastroenterologist and professor at the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam. Her major interest is in esophageal premalignant and malignant lesions. As an endoscopist she performs endoscopic ultrasonographies. She also has her own lab and research lines focused on Barrett's esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma. Prof. Krishnadath's work has been published in several important journals, including, Gastroenterology, GUT, and Cancer Research. The research has been funded through the Dutch Cancer Society and the European Research Council.  During the past years she has been actively participating in most of the ISDE and ESDE meetings. These meetings have been highly interesting and have been excellent opportunities for the dissemination of her work, to learn from others, and most of all to meet with other society members. 

Past-President - Prateek Sharma

Prateek Sharma
University of Kansas School of Medicine and VA Medical Center
Kansas, USA

He completed his Internal Medicine Residency at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and his Gastroenterology Fellowship at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Dr. Sharma’s research has focused on upper gastrointestinal diseases including Barrett’s esophagus, esophageal cancer gastroesophageal reflux disease and evaluating novel imaging techniques for upper and lower gastrointestinal diseases. He has over 300 publications including original articles and book chapters related to these topics and has presented at major national and international meetings. Dr. Sharma has recently written an invited review article on Barrett’s esophagus in the New England Journal of Medicine.  He recently co-edited a book entitled “Barrett’s Esophagus & Esophageal Adenocarcinoma.” 

Dr Sharma has had publications in high impact journal including the New England Journal of Medicine, Annals of Internal Medicine, Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, American Journal of Gastroenterology, Gastroenterology, Gastrointestinal Endoscopy and Gut. He serves as a reviewer for most of the major medicine and gastroenterology subspecialty journals. 

Vice President - Simon Law

Simon Law
The University of Hong Kong, China

I am honored to be the Vice President of International Society of Disease of the Esophagus. I have been an active member of ISDE since the early 1990s, and have attended all its congresses since. As an esophageal surgeon, I have special affinity for the society, as my career grew parallel with it. My closer association with ISDE commenced when I became an editor of Diseases of the Esophagus in 1999, and associate editor since 2010. I have served as co-chairman of the scientific committee for the ISDE world congress in Vancouver in 2014. Currently I am co-chairman of the Education Committee. I have been actively involved in development of many international initiatives on esophageal surgery, including as member of the Worldwide Esophageal Cancer Collaboration, Esophageal Complication Consensus Group, and working group on Enhanced Recovery after Esophagectomy. Engaging with other societies, I also hold positions, such as Consultant for International Society of Digestive Surgery, National Delegate to the International Surgical Society, Secretary General of the American College of Surgeons (Hong Kong Chapter), Asia II Representative of the Member Services Committee of the Society for Surgeons of the Alimentary Tract (SSAT). In addition I am honorary member of the American Surgical Association as well as European Surgical Association. Residing in Hong Kong, I have extensive network with physicians from the Asia Pacific region, not just in countries traditionally with close association with ISDE (such as Japan), but particularly in China, where growing involvement is evident in recent years. I hope that with my experience in the society, my international involvement, my network, I can continue to serve ISDE and form bridges between East and West. I am humbled by the achievement of the ISDE, and will be honoured to contribute more to the society in the future.

Secretary - Gail Darling

Gail Darling
Toronto General Hospital, University Health Network, Canada

I have devoted my career to esophageal diseases both benign and malignant, both in my clinical practice and in research. I am committed to advancement of the diagnosis and management of esophageal disease, particularly esophageal cancer. I support the mission of the ISDE. The importance of a society devoted to diseases of the esophagus cannot be understated. Esophageal disease does not receive sufficient focus within other societies focussed on digestive diseases in general, cancer, or procedure based societies such as surgical societies. ISDE is important not only because of its focus on esophageal disease but also its multidisciplinary nature which brings together specialists of all disciplines whose interest and focus is esophageal disease. Not only does this promote advances in diagnosis and management but also scholarly activity and collegiality.

As a long standing member of ISDE, I believe I am well suited to the duties and obligations of secretary. I have good written and oral communication skills and a collaborative leadership style. I am particularly interested in increasing membership, and promoting interaction with other societies whose mission is aligned with ISDE. I believe that working together we can advance.

Treasurer - Gary Falk

Gary Falk
University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine
Philadelphia, PA

Gary W. Falk, MD, MS, AGAF, is currently professor of medicine and co-director, GI Motility/Physiology Laboratory at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Falk received his under graduate and medical school training at the University of Rochester, NY, before going to George Washington University, Washington, DC, for his medical internship and residency. After a clinical and research fellowship at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, he was a member of the Department of Gastroenterology and hepatology at the Cleveland Clinic, OH, for more than 23 years where he was director for the Swallowing and Esophageal Center. While in Cleveland, he also received a master’s degree in clinical research from Case Western Reserve University.

He has been involved in clinical research in Barrett’s esophagus, gastroesophageal reflux disease, Helicobacter pylori, esophageal motility disorders, advanced esophageal imaging and therapeutics, and eosinophilic esophagitis that has resulted in over 150 peer reviewed publications and NIH and non-NIH grants. The most important of these themes has been in the area of early detection and prevention of esophageal cancer. Among the contributions of his research group have been a number of publications on the significance of high-grade dysplasia in Barrett’s esophagus, including biopsy forceps yield and findings of unsuspected cancer at esophagectomy, the use of cytologic sampling as an alternative to biopsy based surveillance, and the development of the concept of cytology specimens as a platform for molecular based biomarker studies. Other studies in Barrett’s esophagus have focused on epidemiologic observations related to the role of H. pylori in the disease along with issues of age and gender in the development of cancer. Collaborations with other centers have led to studies on familial risk, molecular imaging paradigms, chemoprevention, radiofrequency ablation and endomicroscopy. He has recently served as the chair of an NCI multicenter chemoprevention study examining the role of high dose proton pump inhibitor therapy in Barrett’s esophagus. He is involved in other chemoprevention trials in the NCI-funded Cancer Prevention Network. Recently, translational research studies in collaboration with basic scientists in cancer biology and pathobiology have commenced in order to study the role of inflammatory mediators in eosinophilic esophagitis and cell of origin of Barrett’s esophagus. Research in eosinophilic esophagitis is now focusing on clinical trials of novel therapeutic agents, clinical and biologic aspects of pediatric to adult transition, and participation in the Consortium of Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease Researchers consortium.

Dr. Falk has served nationally through professional societies, including being a past-president of ASGE, editorial positions at journals and on grant review committees at NIH. He is a past associate editor of the American Journal of Gastroenterology and is the current editor of AGA Perspectives. He is a recipient of the Sidney Cohen University of Pennsylvania GI Fellowship Teacher of the Year Award on two occasions, AGA Distinguished Clinician Award, and AGA Imaging & Advanced Technology Section Research Mentor Award


Vani Konda

Vani Konda
Baylor University Medical Center, USA

I am a gastroenterologist with clinical expertise in esophageal disorders, Barrett's esophagus, surveillance, and advanced endoscopic imaging. My clinical practice focuses on esophageal diseases including Barrett's esophagus, early esophageal cancer, achalasia, swallowing disorders, eosinophilic esophagitis, reflux, and complex esophageal strictures. I completed my residency and fellowship training and remained on faculty at University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois. Since 2017, I served as the Clinical Director at the Baylor Scott and White Center for Esophageal Diseases at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. Collaborating with other gastroenterologists, surgeons, and otolaryngologists, I have developed a clinical multidisciplinary program for complex benign and malignant disorders of the esophagus. I actively participate in a unique multidisciplinary, translational research program at the Baylor Scott and White Center for Esophageal Research. My research interests have focused primarily on premalignant lesions of the gastrointestinal tract, in particular Barrett’s esophagus and advanced endoscopic imaging. I have authored over 100 articles, book chapters, and videos. I have been active in the International Society of Diseases of the Esophagus (ISDE) as the Web and Communications Committee Co-chair and in American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG).

Edoardo Savarino

Edoardo Savarino
University of Padua, Italy

I am a gastroenterologist and professor at the University of Padua. My major interest are esophageal motility disorders, functional esophageal diseases and eosinophilic esophagitis. As a gastroenterologist, I perform motility testing and diagnostic/interventional endoscopy. As a researcher, my primary focus is on motility disorders (Chicago Classification), gastroesophageal reflux disease (Lyon Consensus) and eosinophilic esophagitis. My work has been extensively published in several important journals, including, Gastroenterology, GUT, The American Journal of Gastroenterology, Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology and Diseases of the Esophagus. I’m also prominently involved in education of students, residents, fellows and peers at all levels. During the past years, I served as executive director of the ISDE steering committee, actively participating in most of the ISDE and ESDE meetings, activities and guidelines (achalasia). The meetings, in particular, were excellent opportunities for the dissemination of my work, to learn from others, bringing young esophagologists to our wonderful specialty and, most of all, to meet with other society members. The ISDE has the opportunity to further enhance its excellent worldwide reputation as the organization that brings esophagologists together from around the world. I look forward to the opportunity to work with the new ISDE Board of Directors to grow the organization and to work collaboratively with the membership to develop our specialty.

Michael Vaezi

Michel Vaezi
Vanderbilt University Medical Center, USA

The International Society for Diseases of the Esophagus (ISDE) helps disseminate to its membership and beyond important and clinically relevant information about esophageal diseases. ISDE for years has advocated scientific exchange of knowledge relating to esophagus among multidisciplinary specialties. I am honored to have been nominated as a Director in ISDE. I am committed to the mission of the Society in order to advance the practice of gastroenterology and to significantly impact in digestive disease health and outcomes. Over the past years, I have had the privilege to serve at various capacities in different GI organizations and I am currently an associated editor of Gastroenterology. I will provide the requisite support for the missions of the ISDE and provide any insight into improving upon the educational and scientific mission of the Society. My experience (academic position, research, publication, mentoring and interactions with various societies) has given me greater appreciation for the importance of Societal function as well as the future direction of the Society as a whole. I have always sought to enhance the quality of clinical care, education, advocacy and research that impact our ability as gastroenterologists to improve health and prevent disease.

I view the role of the ISDE Director highly important to ensure continued successes in all aspects of ISDE endeavors. I am grateful for being elected and I accept this nomination with humility, sense of pride and commitment to fulfill this important responsibility on behalf of the ISDE. I would work closely with other members to ensure the goals of this society are met and we continue to strive forward in providing significant contributions to our organization. If selected, I will take on this responsibility with enthusiasm, dedication and humility. I have the requisite time to fully commit to this position and would welcome the opportunity. My commitment and service to the ISDE will continue to be strong and I look forward to my continued stewardship on behalf of patients, members and the ISDE.

Manuel Pera

Manuel Pera
Hospital Universitario del Mar, Spain

First of all, it is a great honor and a privilege for me to be elected for a second term as Director of the ISDE Board.

I have been involved in ISDE activities since 1994 when I became member of this society. Over the years I have witnessed the steady growth of our society and its evolution toward a more multidisciplinary organization. My commitment to our society was reinforced when I became associate editor of Diseases of the Esophagus and later on when I was elected Director of the ISDE Executive Committee in 2017. In recent years I have fully supported all the Board´s initiatives which resulted in the development of new relevant committees such as the Clinical Guidelines Committee and the Research and Database Committee. This new structure has become a great platform from which to develop high-quality clinical research. Indeed, the International Esodata Study Group is currently a successful example on how multi-institution international collaborations can bring outstanding research results. From my current position in the ISDE Board and as Past President of the European Society for Diseases of the Esophagus (ESDE), which is currently designated as Affiliated Society of ISDE, I have facilitated the collaboration between our two societies.

It is an honor to continue to represent our interests and keep working on improving the society.

John Reynolds (ESDE)

John Reynolds
St. James Hospital and Trinity College, Ireland

I am Professor of Clinical Surgery at Trinity College Dublin. I am the Clinical Director of the National Esophageal and Gastric Center at James’s Hospital, Dublin, Ireland. My work as a consultant over 25 years has been highly specialized in diseases of the esophagus, both benign and malignant. Prior to this I completed a Fellowship at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre in New York, and was a Senior Lecturer at St. James’s University Hospital in Leeds, England. I am currently Secretary of the ESDE.

My clinical research includes clinical trials, I am PI for the NeoAEGIS international trial, and international audit collaborations, in particular via the Esodata/IECG network.

My research interest is in four areas: (1) obesity, altered metabolism, and esophageal adenocarcinoma; (2) pathogenesis of Barrett’s oesophagus and progression; (3) prediction of response and resistance to chemotherapy and radiation therapy; (4) malnutrition and peri-operative nutrition.

I trust that my specialist experience, broad span of interests of esophageal diseases, established contacts internationally, and leadership of clinical trials and collaborative academic programs will enable me to provide productive input into the ISDE and its programs over the next few years. It would be an honor to serve the Society as a representative of the ESDE.

Hideaki Shimada (JES)

Hideaki Shimada
Toho University Graduate School of Medicine, Japan

I was in charge of esophageal cancer surgery for 20 years at Chiba University, where Professor Komei Nakayama, one of the founders of ISDE, was in charge of esophageal cancer surgery. After that, I was assigned to Toho University in Tokyo to treat esophageal and gastric cancer. I have been a board member of JES from 2012. I am scheduled to be a president of the Annual congress of Japanese Esophageal Society in 2022. I have participated in ISDE every time since 2004. Since 2019, I have been a board member of the ISDE Tokyo office, so I would like to support exchanges between Japanese members and ISDE members. I'm also in charge of the guidelines for the treatment of esophageal cancer and gastric cancer, so at the 2022 Conference, I would like to discuss the latest esophageal cancer treatment with experts in esophageal cancer treatment around the world.

A total of 491 publications, Total Citation=9510, h-index=51, i10-index=196

Editor & Associate editor: Cancer Science, Int J Clin Oncology, Ann Gastroenterological Surgery, Esophagus, Gastric Cancer, Ann Thoracic Cardiovascular Surgery, Surgery Today, J Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Science, Toho J Medicine

Editorial Board: J Gastroenterology, Digestive Surgery, World J Gastroenterology, J Surgical Oncology, Dis Esophagus etc.

Affiliated Societies

International  Interdisciplinary  Everything Esophageal

The International Society for Diseases of the Esophagus is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

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