2017 Conference Speakers



Amy Baker became a Registered Psychiatric nurse in 2002 and an RN in 2004.  She started working for the Bailey Health Clinic, formally G.I. Research, in 2005.  Originally her role involved assessment and follow up of patients with Hepatitis C for any psychiatric illness but over the years her role has grown to include research and standard of care for G.I. and liver disease in addition to psychiatric support and taking on monthly tumor rounds for HCC.  She recently completed her Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing degree. On top of her full time work schedule she runs after her 5 year old and soon to be 2 year old girl.


Dr. Lisa Barrett is Assistant Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Dalhousie University in Halifax.  She is Royal College certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Disease and is also a viral immunologist studying chronic viral infection in humans. She was involved in hepatitis C studies at the National Institutes of Health, and is currently doing trials assessing both the clinical and pathogenesis aspects of HCV to expand the body of knowledge in treatment and prevention.


Dr. Carla Coffin MD, MSc, FRCPC is Associate Professor, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary and Medical Director of the Calgary Liver Unit. Dr. Coffin received her MSc and MD from Memorial University of Newfoundland. She completed training in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at the University of Calgary and an American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases Advanced Hepatology Fellowship at the University of California San Francisco. Dr. Coffin is a Canadian Institutes of Health Research New Investigator Clinician Scientist. She has co-authored the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver Management of HBV guidelines and served on the WHO Expert Advisory Committee for Essential Medicines (HBV and HCV). Her clinical and bench laboratory research is focused on chronic and occult hepatitis B virus (HBV) pathogenesis in the context of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), pregnancy and co-infection.


Jessi Daniels graduated from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Science in nursing, and became a Registered Nurse in 2016. She has worked at the Bailey Health Clinic since 2014 and is involved with assessment and follow up of patients with G.I and liver disease. She is also involved in research with a primary focus on Hepatitis C and Fatty Liver Disease. Outside of the clinic she participated in ringette and currently plays in the National Ringette League for the Edmonton WAM!.


Nauzer Forbes is a clinical post-doctoral fellow in advanced therapeutic endoscopy at the University of Calgary. He is also completing a Master’s of Science (MSc) degree in Health Services Research at the University of Calgary. He completed his undergraduate and medical studies at Queen’s University and the University of Western Ontario, respectively. He then went on to complete residencies in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at McMaster University, serving as Chief Medical Resident and Chief Gastroenterology Resident. His research interests include therapeutic endoscopy and endoscopy training. As of July 1, Nauzer will be joining the University of Calgary GI faculty as part of the therapeutic endoscopy group.


Dr. Juan G. Abraldes is Associate Professor at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. Dr Abraldes gained his MD in 1995 from the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and got his Board Certificate in Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Liver Unit, Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona (2000). He did a postdoctoral training at Yale University (2003–2004), gaining experience in pre-clinical models of portal hypertension and cirrhosis. He was a faculty member of the Hepatic Hemodynamic Laboratory and the Liver Unit, at Hospital Clinic Barcelona, until 2013, when he moved to Alberta. He is now co-director of the Cirrhosis Care Clinic of the University of Alberta. He has published over 150 papers on the pathophysiology, diagnosis and management of portal hypertension. He has co-authored the international Baveno guidelines for the management of portal hypertension in 2005, 2010 and 2015. He is the co-author of the American Association for the Liver Clinical Guidance for the management of varices and variceal bleeding in cirrhosis.


Tara Green graduated from the Bachelor of Nursing program at Memorial University of Newfoundland in 2003. She has clinical experiences in General Surgery and Emergency. In 2008, she set out on a new pathway into Gastroenterology. She spent 5 years at the Forzani and MacPhail Colon Cancer Screening Centre. In 2013, Tara was thrilled to take on the role of Calgary’s only capsule endoscopy RN. Her responsibilities are varied and include managing referrals, performing procedures and also prescreening capsule endoscopy studies. She stays up to date with current literature and attends local, national and international conferences to ensure the Calgary program is meeting current standards of care.


Dr. Stephen B. Hanauer is past President of the American College of Gastroenterology.  He completed a medical degree, with honors, at the University of Illinois in Chicago. His postdoctoral training included an internship and residency in internal medicine, as well as a fellowship in gastroenterology, at the University of Chicago.  He rose through academic ranks to become Professor of Medicine and subsequently was awarded the Joseph B. Kirsner Chair in Medicine and was designated Chief of the Section of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition where he served from 2000-2014.  He was recruited as the Medical Director of the Digestive Health Center at Northwestern Medicine and is Clifford Joseph Barborka Professor of Medicine in the Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine as of January 1, 2014.


Dr. Rajveer Hundal practices in Southern Alberta with a primary focus on EUS and ERCP.  He completed his Gastroenterology fellowship at the University of Calgary with further training in Advanced Therapeutic Endoscopy at the University of Alberta. Dr. Hundal is a past recipient of the Peter Mauro Award at the Alberta Digestive Disease Summit, for his work on enhanced characterization of Barrett’s Esophagus islands through a revision of the Prague Criteria.


It is understood that although genetic susceptibility contributes to the development of inflammatory bowel diseases, upwards of 80% of this risk is yet unaccounted for. As a clinical gastroenterologist and basic scientist, Dr. Jijon is interested in various aspects of Crohn’s disease and intestinal immunology. These interests include the interplay between environmental factors (e.g. Cigarette smoking) and Crohn’s susceptibility genes (e.g.  autophagy, NOD2 signaling). Also, how the intestinal immune system responds to the gut microbiome, and how microbiome profiling can be used to predict disease phenotype and response to therapy.  Our work covers multiple aspects of intestinal epithelial, dendritic and T cell function and spans in vitro cell culture, animal models and human studies. Dr. Jijon did his undergraduate and graduate degrees at the University of Calgary, his PhD focused on studying pro-inflammatory signaling in intestinal epithelial cells.  He then did a research fellowship with Karen Madsen at the University of Alberta, studying the IL-10-deficient mouse model of colitis, before returning to Calgary for his MD.  Dr. Jijon completed his internal medicine training at UBC in 2010, GI subspecialty training in 2012 (Calgary) before moving to Boston to work with Ramnik Xavier (Harvard, 2012-2015) characterizing novel animal models of intestinal inflammation.


Dr. Vipul Jairath is Associate Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Western University and his clinical practice is based at University Hospital, London Ontario. His research interests are in clinical trials, endpoint development and methodology. Prior to moving to Canada, he was a consultant gastroenterologist at Oxford University hospitals and a lecturer at Oxford University, with career funding from the National Institute for Health Research. He is a principal or co-investigator for several randomized trials.



Dr. Karen Kroeker is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Alberta. She completed her gastroenterology residency and an Advanced Clinical and Research Fellowship in Inflammatory Bowel Disease at the University of Alberta. She received a Masters of Experimental Medicine at the University of Alberta in 2012. Her research interests include understanding the impact of a pediatric diagnosis of IBD on the psychosocial impact of IBD, adherence to therapy, therapeutic monitoring in IBD, and the role of vitamin D in the treatment of IBD. Dr. Kroeker is actively involved in medical education, both at the undergraduate and postgraduate. She served as the Program Director of the Advanced Inflammatory Bowel Disease Training Program at the University from 2011-2015. She is currently the Gastroenterology Residency Program Director at the University of Alberta. In addition, she has been involved in a number of patient educational initiatives at the University of Alberta and with the Canadian Digestive Health Foundation.

Peter L. Lakatos

Dr. Peter L. Lakatos is Associate Professor and Director of IBD Centre at McGill University, MUHC. Until January 2017 he was head of the gastroenterology/hepatology ward, endoscopy unit and outpatient clinic at the 1st Department of Medicine, Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary. He is one of the founders and leader of the Hungarian IBD Study Group, council member of the Hungarian Society for Gastroenterology and President Elect of the Colon Section. He is member of educational committee in ECCO and IOIBD member. He is regular reviewer in leading international journals in gastroenterology/hepatology, section editor in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, BMC Gastroenterology and associate editor in J Crohn’s Colitis and World Journal of Gastroenterology. During his career he published more than 250 original papers and reviews including 25 book chapters. His primary research interest is the epidemiology, outcome and biomarkers in prediction of disease progression and response to medical therapy in IBD. 


Dr. Samuel Lee graduated MD from Memorial University, Canada, and did residency training at University of Toronto (Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology) from 1978-83. This was followed by a research fellowship in hepatic hemodynamics at INSERM Unit 481 in Paris, France (Beaujon Hospital), 1984-87. He was a Visiting Scholar at Technion University, Haifa, Israel, for 4 months in 1987, and then joined the faculty of University of Calgary in 1988. He is currently Professor of Medicine (Hepatology), with research interests in cardiovascular complications of cirrhosis and also viral hepatitis. He has published >230 peer-reviewed scientific papers, >25 book chapters and edited a textbook on management of cirrhosis complications. He has won several awards for teaching and research including the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002, the Canadian Association of the Study of Liver (CASL) Distinguished Service Award, 2015, and has lectured in >35 countries. He is a past-president of CASL and the International Ascites Club, and was editor-in-chief of Liver International from 2008-2013. He is currently President of the International Association for Study of Liver (IASL).


Dr. Michael Ronan Lucey was born in Dublin, Ireland, and was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, graduating with the degrees of M.B., B.Ch in 1976.  He was awarded an M.D. by thesis in 1985. He completed his internship at the Meath Hospital, Dublin and residency in Internal Medicine at the Federated Dublin Voluntary Hospitals.  He was a fellow in Gastroenterology at Saint Bartholomew's Hospital, and a fellow in Liver Diseases in Kings College Hospital, both in London, England.  In 1985 he came to the University of Michigan, first as a fellow and then as faculty in the Division of Gastroenterology.  While at the University of Michigan, he became Medical Director of the Liver Transplant program.  From 1995 to 2001, he was Director of Hepatology at the University of Pennsylvania.  In 2001 he became Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. 


Dr. Christopher Ma is a PGY-5 Gastroenterology Fellow at the University of Calgary. After residency, he will be completing a Masters of Public Health at Harvard and an Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinical Trials Fellowship at Robarts.


Dr. Karen Madsen is Professor of Medicine at the University of Alberta and Director of the “Center of Excellence for Gastrointestinal Inflammation and Immunity Research (CEGIIR)”.  After receiving her BSc (Hon) and MSc degrees in Biochemistry at the University of Manitoba, she completed a PhD degree at the University of Calgary in the area of gastrointestinal physiology.  Dr. Madsen has received several awards in recognition of her excellence in research and teaching, including awards from the Canadian Society for Clinical Investigation, Canadian Association for Gastroenterology, Crohn’s Colitis Canada and Canadian Association for Medical Education. The goal of her research program is to gain a mechanistic understanding of environmental and dietary influences on host-microbial interactions in order to design effective therapies to treat human disease based on manipulation of the gut microbiome.


Dr. John Marshall is a Professor of Medicine at McMaster University and Chief of Service for Gastroenterology at Hamilton Health Sciences in Hamilton, Ontario. He completed his B.A. and M.D. at Queen’s University, and then undertook his residency training and M.Sc. in Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics at McMaster University. He is a Full Member of the Farncombe Family Digestive Health Research Institute. His publications include over 180 academic papers and book chapters and over 200 abstracts. He is currently Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, an Associate Editor of ACP Journal Club and Evidence-Based Medicine, an Editorial Board Member for the Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis and Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and an Editor for the Cochrane Collaboration Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Functional Bowel Disorders Review Group. Dr. Marshall’s clinical and research interests include inflammatory bowel disease, post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome, gastrointestinal bleeding, endoscopy, clinical trials, clinical epidemiology, health outcomes and health economics.


Marie-Louise completed her nursing degree at the University of British Columbia in 2009.  After graduating she worked on the vascular and general surgery ward at VGH for three years before returning to Calgary to complete her nurse practitioner training.  While completing her NP training she had the opportunity to work alongside the IBD team at the Foothills hospital where she enjoyed the complexity of care IBD patients required.  After working in Fort McMurray for a short stint she joined the IBD team at the Foothills hospital in the spring of 2015. 


Dr. Remo Panaccione is currently a Professor of Medicine at the University of Calgary and the Director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic at the University of Calgary. Dr. Panaccione graduated from the University of Western Ontario (London, Ontario) with a degree in Medicine in 1993.  He went on to complete his Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology training at the University of Western Ontario and is certified as a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in both Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. Dr. Panaccione completed advanced training in Inflammatory Bowel Disease at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.  He joined the faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary in 1999. He has lectured across North America on various topics in inflammatory bowel disease and has delivered over 120 lectures in the last five years. He is the author of many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on inflammatory bowel disease.  His special interest lies in the fields of advanced immunomodulation and biological therapy.  He is a recognized authority on the use of infliximab (Remicade®) in Canada and co-authored the guidelines on the use of infliximab for the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology. He actively participates in clinical trials of new therapeutic agents in Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.


Dr. Maitreyi Raman is a Gastroenterologist and Physician Nutrition Specialist. She completed Medical School at the University of Ottawa, and Internal Medicine/Gastroenterology at Dalhousie University. She then did an advanced fellowship in Clinical Nutrition at the University of Toronto, and a MSc at the University of Calgary. Presently, she is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Calgary. In addition Dr. Raman is the Medical Director for Nutrition Services, and oversees the Home Parenteral Nutrition Program and Associate Director for Admissions at the University of Calgary. Dr. Raman's research interests include malnutrition in IBD, nutritional modulation of the microbiome in IBD, and malnutrition in hepatic cirrhosis.


Douglas K. Rex

Dr. Douglas K. Rex is Distinguished Professor of Medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine, Chancellor’s Professor at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, and Director of Endoscopy at Indiana University Hospital in Indianapolis.  He co-authored the colorectal cancer screening recommendations of the ACG and the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer.  He also authored the recommendations on quality in colonoscopy of the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer and the ACG/ASGE.  He has authored more than 200 original research papers, 55 book chapters, 200 invited papers, 40 editorials, and 40 guideline papers.  He is the current chair of the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer.  He served in the ACG as Chairman of the Board of Governors and is a Past President of the ACG.  He is a member of the Governing Board of ASGE and a recipient of the Rudolph V. Schindler Award from ASGE.


Dr. Daniel C. Sadowski is Professor of Medicine at the University of Alberta. He is a staff gastroenterologist at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton and also serves as the Quality Lead for the Alberta Colorectal Cancers Screening Program. Dr. Sadowski maintains a clinical practice focused on inflammatory bowel disease and the management of GI motility disorders. His research interests include diagnostic testing for esophageal motility disorders and quality outcomes in colorectal cancer screening.


Dr. Michel Sauve is a general internal medicine and gastroenterology consultant practicing in Fort McMurray since 1991. After almost two decades of dedicated clinical service and numerous public health care advocacy, Dr. Sauve was recognized as his Citizen of the Year in 2009.


Dr. Cynthia Seow completed medical school, internal medicine/gastroenterology training in Australia, followed by a 2 year clinical research fellowship in IBD at Mount Sinai Hospital concurrent with a Masters in Clinical Epidemiology at the University of Toronto. She is an Assistant Professor in the Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary and has a combined clinical and research position. Dr. Seow's primary research interests are in Materno Fetal outcomes in IBD and in pharmacokinetics of biologic therapies in IBD. Dr. Seow runs the University of Calgary IBD pregnancy clinic which was established September 2012, with a linked research registry and biorepository. She is the research chair of MORe CaRe – IBD (Maternofetal Outcomes Research, a Canadian Registry in IBD), a national working group which aims to link researchers and clinicians interested in the area. Dr. Seow is the co-author of the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology endorsed 'Toronto Consensus Statements for the Management of IBD in Pregnancy' which was published in ‘Gastroenterology’ in March 2016. Most recently, she combined her two major research interests by publishing on the effect of pregnancy on the pharmacokinetics of anti-TNF agents in 'Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics'.

Nicholas J. Shaheen

Nicholas J. Shaheen, MD, MPH is the Bozymski-Heizer Distinguished Professor of Medicine at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, and Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at UNC.  Dr. Shaheen is a recognized expert in esophageal diseases.  His research and clinical interests center on gastroesophageal reflux disease, and pre-cancerous and cancerous conditions of the esophagus.  He has authored greater than 300 publications in these areas.  Dr. Shaheen is author of multiple national guidelines in Barrett’s esophagus, GERD and eosinophilic esophagitis.  He has served as senior associate editor for the American Journal of Gastroenterology, and on multiple other editorial boards.  Dr. Shaheen receives research funding from the National Institutes of Health, multiple societies, and private and public foundations.


SHAALAN Jesse siffledeen

Dr. Jesse Siffledeen is a practising gastroenterologist in Edmonton, at the Grey Nuns hospital. He has a special interest in inflammatory bowel disease, having completed his IBD fellowship in 2011 (Oxford UK). He obtained his Masters of Science in research in 2015, studying the epidemiology of IBD health burden in the United Kingdom. He presently manages a large IBD patient population and has recently established the South Edmonton Gastroenterology Clinical Trials Unit, aimed at further meeting the needs of the Edmonton IBD population.


Dr. Jason Silverman is an Assistant Professor in Pediatrics at the University of Alberta and Pediatric Gastroenterologist at the Stollery Children’s Hospital. He completed his GI fellowship training and an MSc in Medical Education at the University of Calgary. With a background as a clinical dietitian, Dr. Silverman maintains clinical interests in nutrition, particularly nutrition support as well as in intestinal rehabilitation. His primary academic interests are in medical education, with an emphasis on curriculum development.



Dr. Michael Stewart completed gastroenterology training at Dalhousie University followed by an advanced fellowship in Inflammatory Bowel Disease at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.  He joined the faculty at the University of Calgary as Clinical Assistant Professor in 2014 and work predominantly out of the South Health Campus.  His specific interests in inflammatory bowel disease research are in quality improvement and therapeutic drug monitoring.


Dr. Mark Swain is currently Professor of Medicine and a hepatologist (Liver Specialist) at the University of Calgary. He has been the Head of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology in Calgary since 2011, and currently holds the Cal Wenzel Family Foundation Chair in Hepatology at the University of Calgary. Dr. Swain graduated from an MD-MSc (Pharmacology) combined program at Queen’s University, Kingston in 1985, then completed his Internal Medicine training at the University of Toronto (1985-88) and his Gastroenterology training at McMaster University in Hamilton (1988-90). He then undertook research fellowship training in the Liver Unit at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda Maryland, USA (1990-93). Dr. Swain has been a clinician-scientist at the University of Calgary since his arrival in Calgary in 1993, where he has been continuously funded by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research for translational research programs in 2 main areas, including (i) delineating the mechanisms whereby inflammation occurring within the body leads to changes within the brain that give rise to disease-associated symptoms (like fatigue), and (ii) exploring the immunological processes that cause liver damage and facilitate liver repair and recovery after injury. His clinical interests are focused in the areas of viral hepatitis and autoimmune liver diseases.



Christian Turbide, MD FRCPC is a clinical assistant professor of Medicine at the University of Calgary, and Examiner at Royal College of Physicians. He was voted teacher of the year for endoscopy teaching in 2009 and 2015. Christian is a commentator on Radio Canada and an author featured in Huffington Post.

Colleen Skidmore - Invited ASG Night Speaker

Colleen Skidmore, PhD is a photography historian and professor at the University of Alberta. Her research focuses on archives of photographs made by or about women between 1860 and 1920, and how these shaped ideas of women in North American societies. She is the author of Searching for Mary Schäffer: Women Wilderness Photography (forthcoming September 2017) and editor and curator of This Wild Spirit: Women in the Rocky Mountains of Canada, which will be seen in exhibition at the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies in Banff from June to October 2017. Dr. Skidmore has also served in a variety of roles in senior academic administration, including appointments as Interim Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President (Academic) at the University of Alberta.


Dr. Melanie Stapleton is the Program Director, GI training program at the University of Calgary and Clinician for the Southern Alberta Home Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition program and GI Malnutrition clinic in Calgary. Her Medical Education includes: Medical school at University of Calgary (1999), Residency (IM and GI) at University of Calgary 1999-2004, and Fellowship in Clinical Nutrition at University of Toronto 2005.

C. Janneke van der Woude

As a professor in the department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology of the Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Dr. Janneke van der Woude is much involved in optimizing care for patients with inflammatory bowel diseases. Her PhD thesis (2004) is entitled “Apoptosis in (pre-) malignant lesions in the gastro-intestinal tract”. She leads the clinical unit for inflammatory bowel diseases and research on the different aspects of inflammatory bowel diseases is being done in close cooperation with the departments of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Pathology, Psychology and Internal Medicine. The research line focuses on new methods for treatment of IBD, improved quality of life for IBD patients, pregnancy in IBD and colitis related cancer. And over the past years she published over 90 peer-reviewed papers in the field of IBD. Dr. van der Woude is board member of the ECCO (European Crohn's & Colitis Organization).



Zobair M. Younossi, MD, MPH, is the Chairman, Department of Medicine, Inova Fairfax Medical Campus and Vice President for Research of Inova Health System. He is also Professor of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Inova Campus and Affiliate Professor of Biomedical Sciences at George Mason University. Dr. Younossi earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, New York (Alpha Omega Alpha, 1989), and completed his residency in internal medicine as well as a fellowship in gastroenterology and hepatology at Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation in La Jolla, California. During his residency and fellowship, he earned his master of public health degree from San Diego State University (SDSU) School ofPublic Health in San Diego, California, being awarded both the Hanlon Award and Outstanding Student Award for SDSU.  He then served as the Staff Hepatologist and Senior Researcher at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, Ohio (1995– 2000).

Speakers will be added as they are confirmed. Information coming soon.