H-ECCO
15December2020

How to get the best out of your pathologist

Francesca Rosini, H-ECCO Member

Francesca Rosini 
© ECCO

The histological diagnosis of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is not an easy task for a pathologist. In the modern era, personal pathology experience alone is insufficient to make a diagnosis of IBD. The information that a pathologist must know in order to evaluate IBD samples appropriately and to make a diagnosis is diverse, and for the most part should be provided by the gastroenterologists, surgeons or clinicians responsible for the care of patients. Even the most experienced pathologist cannot report a case without knowing the clinical background of the patient. Obviously, this should be the standard for all samples, not only for IBD.

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 15, Issue 4, H-ECCO

30September2020

Animal Models: The View of the Pathologist

Ann Driessen and Pamela Baldin, H-ECCO Members


Ann Driessen
© ECCO

Pamela Baldin
© ECCO

The animal model is a useful tool to unravel different pathogenetic mechanisms, to detect biomarkers for monitoring and to test the efficacy and safety of drugs in the preclinical phase. In Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) research, the mouse is the most widely used animal model. Animal models are classified into four categories, namely chemical models, cell transfer models, genetically engineered models, and congenic models. Based on the mechanism of the animal model, different aspects of the pathogenesis of intestinal inflammation in IBD are examined, such as epithelial integrity and wound healing, and innate and adaptive immunity [1].

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 15, Issue 3, H-ECCO

30June2020

New members of the H-ECCO Committee

Gert De Hertogh, H-ECCO Chair


Gert De Hertogh 
© ECCO

As the new chair of the H-ECCO Committee, it is my pleasure to introduce our two newly elected members for 2020, Ann Driessen and Pamela Baldin, who are both Belgian pathologists. Thus, the current members of the H-ECCO Committee are: Monika Tripathi (Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, UK), Francesca Rosini (Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London, UK), Ann Driessen, Pamela Baldin, and myself, Gert De Hertogh (University Hospitals KULeuven, Belgium).

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 15, Issue 2, H-ECCO

12March2020

Report on the 5th H-ECCO IBD Masterclass at ECCO'20

Roger Feakins, Past H-ECCO Chair


Roger Feakins
© ECCO

The Histopathology Committee of ECCO (H-ECCO) is now more than 5 years old, having started as a new working group. It is an enthusiastic group that supports various activities and interacts well with other ECCO Committees. The most identifiable and consistent activity is the H-ECCO IBD Masterclass, a successful event attracting more than 70 delegates annually from Europe and further afield.

Posted in ECCO News, Congress News, ECCO'20, Volume 15, Issue 1, H-ECCO

17December2019

Liver pathology in IBD Patients

Francesca Rosini, H-ECCO Member


Francesca Rosini
© ECCO

Crohn’s Disease (CD) and Ulcerative Colitis (UC) are considered multisystemic diseases. They affect the gastrointestinal tract but can also involve other systems and organs. Almost 50% of patients with Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBDs) experience at least one extraintestinal manifestation (EIM). The principal organs and structures affected by EIMs are, amongst others, joints and bones, eyes, liver and the hepatobiliary system and skin [1].

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 14, Issue 4, H-ECCO

11October2019

Challenges in the diagnosis of diversion colitis

Monika Tripathi, H-ECCO Member

Monika Tripathi wrc 2018
Monika Tripathi
© ECCO

Elective or emergency surgical interventions in the management of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) are mainly reserved for patients with medical refractory disease and life-threatening complications. Approximately 20%–30% of Ulcerative Colitis (UC) and 70%–80% of Crohn’s Disease (CD) patients will need surgery within the first to second decade following primary disease diagnosis [1].

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 14, Issue 3, H-ECCO

12June2019

Histopathological features of colitis due to immunotherapies

Magali Svrcek, H-ECCO Member

Magali Svrcek
Magali Svrcek
© ECCO

Immune checkpoints (ICK) are downregulators of T cell immunity. Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICKi), by blocking the co-inhibitory receptors on T cells to activate their cytotoxic immune function, have become a major therapeutic tool in oncology, notably for the treatment of metastatic melanoma, non-small cell lung carcinoma, renal cell carcinoma, urothelial carcinoma and mismatch repair (MMR) deficient/microsatellite-unstable tumours. In particular, therapeutic monoclonal antibodies have emerged against cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated antigen 4 (CTLA-4), which primarily inhibits T cell activation, and programmed cell death 1 (PD-1), which limits the effector function of activated T cells in the periphery. Food and Drug Administration-approved ICKi include ipilimumab (CTLA-4 inhibitor), pembrolizumab and nivolumab (anti-PD-1) and atezolizumab (anti-PD-L1).

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, H-ECCO, Volume 14, Issue 2

11December2018

The Value of Scoring Systems in the Histopathology of IBD

Gert de Hertogh, H-ECCO Member

Gert De HertoghGert de Hertogh
© ECCO

Histopathologists have traditionally fulfilled three functions in Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) care. First, they play a role in the initial diagnosis, together with gastroenterologists, endoscopists and radiologists. Second, they establish a differential diagnosis at clinical flares of the disease, resolving the question of whether there is reactivation of the IBD, a superinfection or an unrelated pathology. Third, they are involved in the screening of patients for premalignant lesions and cancer.

Posted in Committee News, H-ECCO, Volume 13, Issue 4

04October2018

Pouchitis: Practical Points for Pathologists

Paula Borralho Nunes, H-ECCO Member

Paula Borralho
Paula Borralho Nunes
© ECCO

A significant number of patients with Ulcerative Colitis (UC) will require a colectomy [1], with the most frequent indications including medical refractory disease and the occurrence of dysplasia or cancer in cases of longstanding disease. A total proctocolectomy with ileal pouch–anal anastomosis (IPAA) has become the surgery of choice for the “definitive” management of UC since it avoids a permanent stoma while removing all diseased colonic mucosa [2], but it is also used for familial adenomatous polyposis and sometimes (advertently or inadvertently) for Crohn’s Disease (CD). However, although this surgery has significantly improved the quality of life of patients with UC, complications such as fistulas, abscesses, strictures of the anastomosis and pouchitis can occur after restorative proctocolectomies. Pouchitis refers to a chronic relapsing inflammatory condition with active inflammation of IPAA mucosa and is considered to be a primary “non-specific, idiopathic inflammation of the neorectal ileal mucosa”. 

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, H-ECCO, Volume 13, Issue 3

08June2018

Serrated lesions in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Magali Svrcek, H-ECCO Member

Magali Svrcek
Magali Svrcek
© ECCO

In addition to the “classical” pathway of colorectal carcinogenesis, involving development of cancer from an adenomatous precursor lesion, an alternative pathway, the serrated pathway, is now recognised to exist, and it is estimated that approximately 30% of colorectal cancers (CRC) arise via this alternative pathway [1]. In the last WHO classification, serrated polyps were classified as (i) hyperplastic polyps (HP), (ii) sessile serrated adenoma/polyps (SSA/P), with or without dysplasia, and (iii) traditional serrated adenomas (TSA). The possibility of a serrated pathway has also been suggested in colorectal carcinoma complicating Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) [2–4]. Little is known concerning immunohistochemical and molecular features of serrated lesions in IBD: Data are limited to small series of patients or case reports and findings are controversial due to the rarity of the cases. However, the clinical, pathological and biological characteristics of serrated polyps in patients with IBD do seem to resemble those of their sporadic counterparts.

Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, H-ECCO, Volume 13, Issue 2

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