Letter from the President 2015


March 2015
IUSTI has continued its tradition of providing successful regional conferences and events were held in our European and Asia-Pacific regions. IUSTI-Europe and the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH), with support from the Maltese Association of Dermatology and Venereology, held a joint meeting in St. Julian’s, Malta from 18-20 September 2014 with the theme of ‘Migration, recreation and sexual health’.  The conference was well attended and IUSTI’s appreciation goes to the conference organizing team, chaired by Joseph Pace, and also to the hard work of the scientific committee, chaired by Jackie Sherrard. The IUSTI Asia Pacific (IUSTI-AP) region held its 18th regional conference in Bangkok, Thailand, from 11-14 November 2014.  The conference was chaired by Chavalit Mangkalaviraj, with support from Kit Fairley (Scientific Committee Chairperson), Somesh Gupta (IUSTI-AP Regional Director) and Xiang-Sheng Chen (IUSTI-AP Chairperson).  The conference’s theme was ‘STI, HIV and sexual health global collaboration for effective prevention’.  It was well attended and the conference provided international delegates with an update on the current advances in the STI/HIV field. The social programme was carefully put together with both graceful and energetic cultural dances (Figure 1).

Figure 1: Dancers at the IUSTI-AP conference gala dinner

Preparations continue for the 2015 World STI and HIV Congress (13-16 September), which is a joint meeting of the International Society for STD Research (ISSTDR) and IUSTI World (http://www.worldsti2015.com/ehome/index.php?eventid=91027&). The meeting will be held in the sunny city of Brisbane. This landmark conference is the first ISSTDR conference in the southern hemisphere in a 40 year history of the Society.  As such, it provides a unique opportunity for those young researchers in the Asia-Pacific region to attend the meeting and we hope that we will be able to support a number of these individuals to attend with scholarships. Although we were unsuccessful in obtaining scholarship funding support from the Australian Government, the conference has received tremendous support from a number of pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies for which we are very appreciative. The conference’s theme is ‘Up and coming’ which acknowledges the conference’s aim to promote up-and-coming new and outstanding international researchers. The conference will be jointly chaired by Basil Donovan (ISSTDR President) and myself (IUSTI President). The scientific programme is progressing well under the leadership of Nicola Low and Jeff Klauser, who are supported by a number of track chairs and team members.  Plenary speakers have been invited and symposia are in the final stage of development. The deadline for abstract submission is 13th April 2015 and early bird registration ends on 6th July 2015. The Congress will run back to back with Australasian Society for HIV Medicine’s (ASHM) conference, which runs from 16-18 September.  I would particularly like to than Cathy Pooley (ASHM) who has been working tirelessly for the past several months to ensure the success of this large biennial conference.
Moving forward to 2016, I would again encourage you to support the IUSTI World Congress scheduled for 9-11 May in Marrakech, Morocco (Figure 2). 

Figure 2: IUSTI World Congress 2016, Marrakech


The conference promised to be a unique blend of science and cultures.  Amina Hançali, our IUSTI-Africa Regional Chairperson, will chair the conference and Jo-Anne Dillon is already busy working on the scientific programme with her core team. 

David Lewis, IUSTI President



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