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President's Message

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

By collaborating with the World Allergy Organization’s member societies, WAO provides direct educational outreach programs, symposia and lectureships to members in nearly 100 countries. WAO also sponsors scientific symposia in developing areas and jointly sponsors postgraduate programs on allergy and clinical immunology. >> Read More...

Inside the Issue

WISC 2016

WAO International Scientific Conference 2016


Register by 31 July 2016 to receive a reduced registration price!

Participate in the Scientific Program for WISC 2016 by submitting your abstract by the 31 July 2016 deadline!

WAO Junior Members, apply for one of the limited number of travel grants. Deadline is 31 July 2016.

Meet Your WAO Leaders


Francesca Levi-Schaffer, PharmD, PhD
Treasurer, World Allergy Organization
Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics Unit, Institute for Drug Research, School of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Member Society: Israel Association of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (IAACI)

What inspired you to become more involved in WAO?
Throughout my career as a basic researcher in allergy and asthma, I have been a member as well as an active volunteer in various professional societies in the field. The World Allergy Organization (WAO), with the purpose to advance excellence in clinical care, research, education and training in allergy and clinical immunology, is recognized as one of the most important global organizations in the field. Thus, becoming active in WAO was most appealing and natural for me.

What would you like to share about the work of your national member society?
The Israel Association of Allergy and Clinical Immunology’s (IAACI) activities include bi-monthly scientific meetings, an annual conference, active participation in committees of the Israeli Ministry of Health and national committees on policies regarding allergy and allergy related topics, a newsletter with updates on topics relevant to the field, and development and promotion of the profession in the medical community.  

6-9 December 2016, the IAACI and its collaborating partner Allergists for Israel will be hosting the WAO International Scientific Conference (WISC) in Jerusalem. The theme of the conference is Outstanding Allergy, Clinical Immunology and Cultural Heritage. The conference will offer presentations of the latest research, reviews of current theory and practice, plus hands-on and problem based learning. The IAACI is honored to have been chosen to host the conference and invites WAO members throughout the world to participate in a scientifically exciting meeting in one of the oldest but also modern, beautiful and vibrant cities of the world — Jerusalem.

What is one of your current special interests in the field of allergy/immunology?
My expertise is in the area of immunopharmacology of allergy. The main goal of my research in recent years has been to identify new targets for prophylaxis/treatment of allergic diseases and their consequences such as fibrosis and angiogenesis by specifically studying the two main effector cells of allergy, i.e. the mast cells and the eosinophils.

My research focuses on mast cell and eosinophil cross-talk (AEU) in allergy, novel inhibitory and activating receptors on mast cells and eosinophils; the role of mast cells and eosinophils in hypoxia (allergy, COPD); mastocytosis treatment; atopic dermatitis, the microbiome and the AEU; and bispecific antibodies as novel drugs for allergy.

Reference(s) to one or two of your most recent publications
Papain activates human mast cells to release pro-inflammatory mediators via its enzymatic activity.
sCD48 is anti-inflammatory in S. aureus enterotoxin B induced eosinophilic inflammation.

What's New


New Online Learning Modules!

Linking Upper and Lower Airways in Severe Asthma, by Makoto Nashino and Motohiro Ebisawa
This interactive case history is based on a real life scenario. Participants have the opportunity to test their knowledge on various aspects of the case. They also will find references to publications and other resources online.

Severe and Uncontrolled Asthma, by Mario Sanchez-Borges
This module provides definitions, differential diagnoses, comorbidities, clinical case presentation, complementary studies consideration, evaluation and diagnosis, treatment considerations, and asthma phenotypes.

Other recent severe asthma resources:

Recent Understanding for New Mechanisms of Allergy and Airway Inflammation (Recorded Symposium)
Presentations by Hans-Uwe Simon, Deborah Strickland, and Koichiro Asano cover the topics of New Insights into Eosinophil-Mediated Immunopathology, Similarity and Difference between Th2 Inflammations, and Clinical Phenotypes and Molecular Mechanisms of Severe Asthma.

Eosinophilic Bioactivities in Severe Asthma (Article)
This review by Tara Carr, Sergejs Berdnikovs, Hans-Uwe Simon, Bruce S. Bochner, and Lanny J. Rosenwasser provides information on Effector and Pro-Inflammatory Mechanisms of Eosinophils, Markers on Eosinophils, and Eosinophils, Severe Asthma, and Allergic Inflammation.


The first WATS for 2016 took place in St. Petersburg, Russia on 2-3 July 2016 in conjunction with the IX World Asthma, Allergy, and COPD Forum and the X CIS Congress on Allergology and Immunology at the Park Inn Pribaltiyskaya Hotel. The Training School was a great success! A special thank you to the speakers: Prof. Mario Sanchez Borges, Dr. Dana Wallace, Prof. Ignacio Ansotegui, Dr. Bryan Martin and Dr. Sami Bahna. In addition, we would like to thank Prof. Revaz Sepiashivili and the officers of CIS for hosting this WATS and congratulate them on a successful meeting!


New Question!

Systematic Reviews: There is a lot of criticism of systematic reviews, both in medical journals and social media. It is claimed that systematic reviews have a bias towards non-recommendation of an intervention, often in the face of one or two very well structured randomized clinical trials. How do we handle this anomaly in our clinical practice, especially when patients are often very knowledgeable due to internet searches?

Are you curious to read what the experts have to say on this question? Click here to read their answer.

To pose educational, scientific or medical questions about allergy, asthma and clinical immunology to WAO international experts, click here if you are a physician. Find a growing list of answered questions here.


How would you like your organization to have a rich and lasting impact on the field of allergy/immunology? Submit your application for a chance to become a WAO Center of Excellence by 30 September 2016.

For more information and to submit an application, click here.


Check out this month’s Junior Members News by the WAO Junior Member Chairs, Prof Razvigor Darlenski and Prof Marco Caminati on the Junior Members activities.  We greatly thank both Prof Razvigor Darlenski and Prof Marco Caminati for their contribution to this month’s WAO Junior Members News.


WAO on Twitter

WAO would like to thank its followers: WAO now has over 4,000 followers on Twitter! Join the other 4,000 followers on WAO’s Twitter for up-to-date information about current news and events of interest to allergists and immunologists. You will also get updates on future meetings, education, and what is new at

And don’t forget about the other WAO social media sites!

LinkedIn Facebook  Instagram

Editor's Choice Literature Review

Endotypes of allergic diseases and asthma: An important step in building blocks for the future of precision.


Book Review

Mast Cells: Methods and Protocols


What's New in Small Airways Research

Small airways disease is highly prevalent in asthma, even in patients with milder disease: A systematic literature review


What's New in Severe Asthma Research

Plasma interleukin-6 concentrations, metabolic dysfunction, and asthma severity: a cross-sectional analysis of two cohorts.


WAO Journal

WAO Journal



Eosinophilic esophagitis: published evidences for disease subtypes, indications for patient subpopulations, and how to translate patient observations to murine experimental models    View Article

Successful use of cyclosporine as treatment for eosinophilic cystitis: a case report   View Article

Eosinophilic biomarkers in severe asthma    View Article

Particularities of allergies in the tropics    View Article