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The EASL Mentorship Programme was created to guide young scientists and clinicians through a crucial stage in their career path by encouraging scientific exchange and fostering personal developmental relationships with a more experienced and knowledgeable hepatologist or senior scientist.

About EASL Mentorships

This Mentorship Programme offers three young scientists or clinicians the opportunity to receive support from an international and independent experienced senior colleague. By matching mentees with a senior hepatologist or senior basic scientist as mentor, the Mentorship Programme aims at enhancing scientific exchange and personal developmental relationships. This is achieved by supporting and advising junior scientific researchers and junior clinicians in their career choices and scientific growth.

Benefits for Mentees

  • Personal development
  • Monthly virtual meetings between Mentor and Mentee
  • Mentee visits Mentor’s institution for 1 week
  • Complimentary access to EASL Congress

Discover the Mentors for 2023


Jesús M. Bañales is Professor of Molecular Biology and Head of the Liver Diseases Group at the Biodonostia Health Research Institute – Donostia Univ. Hospital in San Sebastian (Spain). Prof. Bañales is an international expert on the study of liver pathobiology, from health to disease, with 20 years of experience in basic, translational and clinical research. His multidisciplinary group is chiefly focused on studying the molecular mechanisms involved in liver pathobiology, with special attention to cholestatic liver diseases (primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC), and polycystic liver disease (PLD)), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and cholangiocarcinoma (CCA)), and looking for novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies.

He is also Prof. Sciences at the Univ. Navarra (Spain), and Assistant Prof.  Medicine/Sciences at Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN, US) and Univ. Area Andina (Colombia).

Professor Bañales is also: Coordinator of the European Network for the Study of Cholangiocarcinoma (ENS-CCA); Vice-Chair of the European COST Action EURO-CHOLANGIONET on Cholangiocarcinoma; Coordinator of the “Cancer Task Force” of the International Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis Study Group (IPSCSG); Steering Committee Member of the Global Cholangiocarcinoma Alliance (GCA); Steering Committee Member of the African Hepatopancreatico-biliary Cancer Consortium (AHPBCC); Coordinator of the Ibero-Latin American Research Network on Cholangiocarcinoma (ILARN-CCA); Member of the Governing Board AEEH (Spanish Association for the Study of the Liver); Member of the EASL Educational Committee (European Association for the Study of the Liver); and  Member of ERN-Rare Liver Diseases (EU H2020).

Professor Bañales is author in >180 research articles published in referent international Journals, has obtained >40 research projects as PI funded by National and International Institutions (including EU Horizon 2020), is inventor of 5 patents (3 licentiated), has supervised 15 doctoral thesis and 9 Master students, and is Member of the Editorial Board of Hepatology, Nature Reviews Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Liver Transplantation, Seminars in Liver Diseases, Cells, and Special Section Editor of Journal of Hepatology. Finally, he was awarded with different national and international prizes for his significant research career  (EASL YI Award 2018; UEG Rising Star 2018; “Ser Navarra Research Award 2020”, among others).

As a mentor, I will be keen on understanding my mentee’s goal and needs. I believe in the importance of providing development support, coaching, acknowledgement and feedback. I will also make sure to support and advise my mentee on their career path and provide collaboration opportunities.


Henning Grønbæk (MD, PhD) is Clinical Chair Professor at the Department of Hepatology & Gastroenterology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark.

Henning Grønbæk graduated in 1991 from HEALTH, Aarhus University and finished his PhD in endocrinology (Diabetic kidney disease) in 1995 clinical training and specialization in Hepatology. Recent focus has been on the role of macrophages in acute and chronic liver diseases focused on macrophage specific biomarkers for liver disease severity and disease progression. As part of his research and clinical activities he has established important national and international collaborations including the EF-CLIF consortium and the ERN-program for rare liver diseases.

HG has supervised more than 40 master thesis, research year and PhD programs and served as evaluator of a number of PhD theses. Current PhD project includes novel biomarkers techniques in NAFLD and chronic liver diseases as well as new drug treatment for refractory ascites. In addition, HG has been involved in research grant evaluations for national and international research foundations and also involved in a number of successful research applications. International exchange includes Emory University Hospital and Eggleston Childrens Hospital (Atlanta, Georgia, USA) and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Sydney University (Sydney, Australia).

As member of EASL Educational Committee the training of the next generation of European hepatologists is a key interest and focus, and I will look forward to be mentor in the EASL Mentor program. I will look forward to establish a relationship that will be fruitful for the mentee regarding academic and clinic plans and development including work-life balance.

As a mentor I will be able to offer my time and interest in mentoring a young colleague for decisions regarding their clinical and academic career. Mentoring may be by Zoom, phone and physical meetings at EASL conferences and symposia. 


Krista Rombouts PhD is Professor at the Institute for Liver and Digestive Health, Regenerative Medicine and Fibrosis Group, Head of Centre for Tissue Repair and Regeneration, University College London (UCL), UK. During her PhD she gained expertise in screening for anti-fibrogenic compounds by exploring hepatic stellate cell – myofibroblasts differentiation and epigenetics.

Prof Rombouts was a recipient of the Sheila Sherlock post-doctoral Fellowship EASL carried out at the University of Florence, Italy and since 2012 Prof Rombouts joined UCL, UK. Current research interests are fibrogenesis with focus on Hepatic Stellate Cell behaviour; liver cancer cell biology with focus on fibrotic stroma cell interaction; NAFLD-NASH and innovative 3D cell culture systems for improvement of new target identification and drug development, with over 70 publications in international peer reviewed scientific Journals (citations 5532, h-index of 39, i10-index of 64). In the last 10 years she has directed 9 doctoral theses, 8 post-doctoral fellows and over 19 MSc and BSc degree projects. Prof Rombouts has given invited presentations at universities, pharmaceutical companies, and national/international congresses. Prof Rombouts was Editorial Board Member of AJP, Journal of Hepatology and is Associate Editor of Frontiers in Medicine – Gastroenterology. She has international academic collaborators and industrial partners and is shareholder and consultant of UCL Spin-out Engitix Therapeutics Ltd since 2016.

After more than 20 years working as basic research scientist in the field of Liver Diseases, I can help discussing your project, your new ideas. I’m an open minded person, problem solver and I like challenges! I love meeting people, working and collaborating together with people, the more the merrier! 

Application Process

To apply, you will need to provide the following:

  • A complete CV: Demonstrate your strong interest in hepatology and/or liver research.
  • An abstract: Accepted at a scientific congress/medical congress/conference.
  • Or a publication: Published.
  • A cover letter: Detail your interest in the Mentorship Programme and stating the objective(s) which you, the mentee, would like to achieve.
  • A letter of recommendation: From a former or current supervisor or Head of Institute/Head of Department.

All applications will be reviewed by the Educational Committee and are to be submitted in English.

EASL will process the applicant’s personal data as provided in the application dossier. The applicant gives his/her consent to such control and processing of his/her personal data. EASL will handle the applicant’s personal data in accordance with all applicable legislation for the purpose of reviewing the candidate’s suitability for the Mentorship.

Applications are open until 30 November 2022.

Apply here

Conditions for Mentees

Mentorships are to begin, latest, January of the year following application and should last for one year. Extended programmes cannot be requested or accepted.

  • Must be a registered EASL member.
  • Should be under the age of 35 at the time of application and/or still in training.
  • Must not hold a permanent position.
  • Home institution must be European and located in a different European country from the mentor’s institution.
  • No restriction on the applicant’s nationality.
  • The Mentors and Mentees are invited to attend the EASL Congress.

Questions regarding EASL Mentorship should be sent to mentorship@easloffice.eu.

Previous Mentors and Mentees

Francesca Aprile
Prof. Andrea de Gottardi
Iulia Minciuna
Prof. Jean-François Dufour
Andrés Conthe
Thomas Berg
Coskun Ozer Demirtas
Maurizia R. Brunetto
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