March 3, 2023. The activity of the Ludza Research Center has begun

Photo: Training of employees at the Ludza Research Center.

On February 28, the GISTAR research center opened its doors in Ludza. Until March 2, training was conducted there for future GISTAR research center employees. GISTAR participants will be invited to participate in the "EUROHELICAN and TOGAS cohort dynamic control monitoring study of GISTAR study participants" within the research stage.

On March 1, the scientific director of the GISTAR project, director of the Institute of Clinical and Preventive Medicine Institute of the University of Latvia (IL ICPM), gastroenterologist, and professor at the University of Latvia, Mārcis Leja, gave a lecture on the possibilities of reducing mortality caused by stomach cancer and European perspectives on these issues in the Microsoft Teams environment. As lecturers, the new project scientist Sergejs Paršutins, senior expert at ICPM, GISTAR research administrative manager Aiga Rūdule, ICPM researchers Reinis Vangravs and Edgars Dauss participated in the training in person.

During the training, the new team was introduced to the research website, data usage and security rules, the GISTAR data management system, research protocol, the inclusion of study participants, and the acquisition of all standard procedures in practice.

On March 3, the inclusion of study participants in the dynamic control monitoring study of the cohort (EUROHELICAN and TOGAS projects) began at the Ludza research center.

The "Accelerating gastric cancer reduction in Europe through Helicobacter pylori eradication” project, or EUROHELICAN for short, is an EU-supported project under the EU4Health program. It will evaluate a population-based strategy for testing and eradicating the Helicobacter pylori bacteria. As a result of the project, world and European experts will develop guidelines for the introduction of gastric cancer screening and recommendations for evaluating its effectiveness. In Latvia, it is led by the Institute of Clinical and Preventive Medicine Institute of the University of Latvia in collaboration with the National Institute of Public Health of Slovenia (NIJZ), the International Agency for Research on Cancer of the World Health Organization (IARC/WHO, France), Nantes University Hospital (France), and the Community Healthcare Center Dr. Adolf Drolc Maribor (Slovenia). The project will continue until the end of April 2025.

More about the EUROHELICAN project - https://www.kpmi.lu.lv/lv-lv/petijumi-un-projekti/eurohelican

The project “Towards gastric cancer screening implementation in the European Union”, abbreviated as TOGAS, will begin in March 2023, with UL ICPM being the leading partner, collaborating with more than 20 institutions throughout Europe.

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HADEA). Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

Where authors are identified as personnel of the International Agency for Research on Cancer/World Health Organization, the authors alone are responsible for the views expressed in this article and they do not necessarily represent the decisions, policy or views of the International Agency for Research on Cancer/World Health Organization.

February 14, 2023. The number of participants in the GISTAR study has reached 11 000

We are pleased to announce that the number of participants in the GISTAR study has reached 11 000, and currently the number of participants in the research center in Liepāja has just exceeded 630 people.

We kindly thank the participants who have already participated in our research, as well as welcome everyone who wants to participate in the GISTAR study in Liepāja. The GISTAR study is carried out for the early diagnosis of digestive diseases, where the population aged 40-64 has the opportunity to perform free examinations for diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.

As previously announced, so far the study, conducted in cooperation with the Liepāja Regional Hospital, proves that every fourth resident of the Liepāja region should carefully monitor the health of their digestive tract.

January 31, 2023. Every fourth resident of Liepāja should carefully monitor the health of their digestive tract

Publicity photo: Toms Grīnbergs, UL Communication department

The GISTAR study, conducted in Liepāja by the University of Latvia Institute of Clinical and Preventive Medicine (UL ICPM) and the Liepāja Regional Hospital proves that every fourth resident of the Liepāja region should carefully monitor the health of their digestive tract.

Of the 584 residents who have participated in the study so far, 119 have been diagnosed with H.pylori, a bacteria promoting development of stomach cancer. In such cases, research participants are prescribed eradication therapy for the mentioned bacteria. For those study participants who are found to have deviations from the norm in their blood or fecal samples, which has been the case in another 30 cases, additional examinations are prescribed - upper endoscopy or colonoscopy.

The statistics of cancer of the digestive system in Latvia, in Europe and throughout the world are increasing every year. Every fourth newly diagnosed cancer develops in the digestive tract. Gastrointestinal tumors are the third leading cause of cancer deaths. Colorectal (colon and rectal) cancer and stomach cancer are the most common tumors of the digestive system. About 1,100 people are diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 700 die from it in Latvia annually. Every year, 500 - 600 inhabitants of Latvia fall ill with stomach cancer, which, compared to the indicators of European Union countries, is one of the highest in relation to the number of inhabitants. Scientists involved in the GISTAR study remind that a  detection of malignant tumors allows for successful treatment, which also significantly increases the survival rate of the patients.

Also currently, the residents of Liepāja and the surrounding area between the ages of 40 and 64 are invited to check upon health of their digestive tract. Free health examinations are held in Liepāja, 23 Jūrmalas Street, every working day from 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. More information about the the tests is available on the research website www.gistar.eu, application by phone - 25679868

The project is funded by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) project ‘Practical Studies’, 4th phase, project ID Nr. ‘Hybrid-sensor breath analysis for colorectal cancer screening’. The project is co–financed by REACT-EU to mitigate the effects of the pandemic crisis.



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