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Keynote Lecture

We are honoured that Dr Peter Libby has accepted to give the EuroPRevent 2016 Keynote Lecture: "Remaining challenges to cardiovascular prevention in the "post LDL" era".

Remaining challenges to cardiovascular prevention in the "post LDL" era

We are fortunate to practice in an era that offers multiple approaches to lowering low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Indeed, we can now consider pharmacologic control of LDL a problem solved in principle, although we can all do a better job of applying current therapies more widely. Yet, despite this victory of clinical science, we still face a continuing burden of cardiovascular risk.  Indeed, the very availability of potent LDL lowering therapies raises the vexing question of how early to start pharmacotherapy. How do we balance the deployment of primordial prevention with lifestyle measures in youth with adoption of available drug treatments?

Current preventive measures including LDL lowering, curtailing tobacco abuse, and better control of hypertension have begun to lower cardiovascular event rates.  Yet, the advances have hardly extinguished the ongoing global scourge of atherosclerotic complications. These interventions are changing the biology of human atherosclerosis, but have not obliterated the disease.  We must now confront contributors to the current epidemic of obesity, diabetes, the ageing of the population, and the elements of risk beyond LDL that they entail.  Current genetic and clinical data cast doubt on the protective role of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. In contrast, growing evidence supports a role for triglyceride-rich lipoproteins and their associated apolipoproteins as causal contributors to the residual burden of atherothrombotic events in the era of intensive LDL lowering.  As a community, we must face pressing questions regarding implementation of existing preventive measures both from a societal and individual perspective. We must also urgently continue the quest to develop and evaluate novel interventions aimed to attack the residual burden of cardiovascular risk that threaten our populations in patients despite our contemporary primary and secondary preventive measures.

Peter Libby, MD

Peter Libby, MD, is a cardiovascular specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and holds the Mallinckrodt Professorship of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He served as Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine at BWH from 1998 - 2014. His areas of clinical expertise include general and preventive cardiology. His current major research focus is the role of inflammation in vascular diseases such as atherosclerosis.  Dr. Libby has a particular devotion to translate laboratory studies to pilot and then large-scale clinical cardiovascular outcome trials.

Dr. Libby has received numerous awards and recognitions for his research accomplishments, including most recently the Gold Medal of the European Society of Cardiology (2011), the Basic Research Prize of the American Heart Association (2011), the Anitschkow Prize in Atherosclerosis Research of the European Atherosclerosis Society (2013), and the Special Award of the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology (2014). He has received a number of lifetime achievement awards from various organizations. Dr. Libby was selected as Consulting Editor of the year by Circulation Research in 2015, and received a 2015 High Citation Award as an editorial board member of Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology. He has been named the laureate of the Ernst Jung Gold Medal for Medicine for 2016.

Dr. Libby’s elected professional memberships include the Association of American Physicians, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, and honorary memberships in the British Atherosclerosis Society, the Japan Circulation Society, and the Japanese College of Cardiology. He has served as the President of the Association of University Cardiologists. He also has served in many roles as a volunteer for the American Heart Association, including chairman of several research committees and member of the executive committees of the Councils on Arteriosclerosis, Circulation, and Basic Science. He presided the American College of Cardiology’s Research Allocations Peer Review Committee for two terms. He has frequently consulted for the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, including a 5-year term on the Board of Scientific Councilors. He directed the DW Reynolds Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center and two cycles of Leducq Foundation Awards, and has received continuous funding from the US National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) for several decades.

An author and lecturer on cardiovascular medicine and atherosclerosis, Dr. Libby has published extensively in medical journals including Circulation, Journal of Clinical Investigation, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature. He is an Editor of Braunwald’s Heart Disease, having served as the Editor-in Chief of the 8th Edition. Dr. Libby has also contributed chapters on the pathogenesis, treatment, and prevention of atherosclerosis to many editions of Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. He has held numerous visiting professorships and delivered more than 80 major named or keynote lectures throughout the world.

Dr. Libby earned his medical degree at the University of California, San Diego, and completed his training in internal medicine and cardiology at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital (now Brigham and Women’s Hospital). He also holds an honorary MA degree from Harvard University, and an honorary doctorate from the University of Lille, France.