How Far Have We Come, and Where Are We Going? 3 Years After 1990
In 1972, Dr. Baruch Blumberg delivered an eloquent review entitled ‘Australia Antigen: The History of its Discovery with Comments on Genetic and Family Aspects’ to an enthusiastic audience at the first International Symposium on Viral Hepatitis and Liver Disease conducted at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco. Although Dr. Blumberg observed that familial aggregation of Australia antigen may also be indicative of a common environmental exposure, his genetic predisposition theory was challenged by two participants at the meeting, Nicholas Petrakis from the University of California Medical Center and Joshua Lederberg from the Stanford University Medical Center. His response to these challenges was ‘…that one makes hypotheses to generate experiments in an attempt to disprove them’. More importantly, he stated that he was prepared to abandon his genetic hypothesis any time that it is clearly rejected. This spirit of openness, of a willingness to debate the issues and to seek truth in science no matter what the outcome, is what these triennial meetings have come to symbolize. The comprehensive nature of the program, covering the latest research findings in viral hepatitis delivered by internationally recognized experts, is what sets these symposia apart from all other hepatitis gatherings.
KeywordsViral Hepatitis Australia Antigen California Medical Late Research Finding Common Environmental Exposure
- 1.Hollinger FB (1991) In: Hollinger FB, Lemon SM, Margolis HS (eds) Viral hepatitis and liver disease. Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, pp 916Google Scholar