EASL history


In April 2010, the EASL history book was revealed during the International Liver Congress™ in Vienna, Austria, and distributed as a special gift to all EASL members.

The book recollects the creation of EASL and explains how, after 44 years since its inception, our association had become an influential and major international organisation within Europe and, indeed, worldwide.

The volume was compiled by Prof. Roger Williams, Prof. Heiner Wedemeyer and a family of 32 EASL contributors using personal accounts and materials taken from the EASL archives. Thank you to everyone who contributed!

View the EASL History timeline


Over 50 years of commitment to liver research

The European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) was founded on April 23rd, 1966 in Marburg/Lahn by Prof. Gustav-Adolf Martini, MD. His main aim was to strengthen international knowledge and cooperation - specifically within the field of hepatological research. He succeeded, along with scientific colleagues, in inviting between 70 to 80 European hepatologists to Marburg for a two-day symposium on hepatology. This meeting proceeded successfully in a very fruitful, personable, friendly atmosphere and marked the beginning of EASL.

It was agreed that EASL should serve as a loose association of physicians and scientists with an interest in liver research and would have neither fixed membership nor a board of directors. Meetings would be held annually with the venue rotating through different European countries.

Its foundation was inspired by the existence of the AASLD (American Association for the Study of the Liver, est. November 1949) and the IASL (International Association for the Study of the Liver, est.1958).

Due to a rapidly increasing number of participants and abstracts submitted for presentation at meetings, the formerly "loose" association quickly developed into an official organization with solicitors, scientific committee and a set meeting structure. The decision to have a fixed membership followed later in 1984.