Scientific Programme




     Pre- and Post-Congress Workshops










Having a multidisciplinary congress like this is very useful. The tracks for the Academic Clinical Programmes sets a standard and creates a platform for interprofessional as well as inter-institutional staff to come together to share on research, education and clinical service advancement.                








~ Prof Celia Tan
Group Director, Allied Health, SingHealth


Programme >

Gastroenterology Symposium
Impactful Advances in Gastrointestinal Malignancy Happening Right Here


 Track type: Symposium


 Duration: 90 minutes


 Location: Academia, Auditorium

Topic 1:

Colorectal Cancer Screening Reduces Cancer Mortality

Adj Assoc Prof Lim Chee Hooi


Colorectal cancer is the commonest cancer in men and second commonest cancer in women in Singapore. Therefore, the most impactful advance in colorectal cancer is prevention rather than cure. Mortality from colorectal cancer can be reduced by early diagnosis and prevention through polypectomy. The evidence for colorectal cancer screening and the tests available for screening will be presented.


The discussion will cover the importance of Quality Assurance Programme in Colonoscopy for screening the right patient at the right time. The Shared Decision-making grid will also be introduced to tailor choices to patients’ needs for the screening tests available.

Topic 2:

Sedentary Lifestyle and Colorectal Cancer

Dr Vikneswaran Namasivayam

Physical inactivity is associated with colon cancer, the commonest cancer in Singapore, and its precursor, adenoma. Although physical activity may be associated with other confounding healthy behaviours, several lines of evidence suggest physical activity directly protects against colon cancer. Several mechanisms linking physical activity to cancer have been studied. In addition, there is growing recognition that a sedentary lifestyle characterised by prolonged sitting is a risk factor for colorectal cancer. The evidence linking physical activity, sedentary time and colorectal cancer (“too much sitting” vs “too little exercise”) and potential mechanisms will be explored in the talk. 

Topic 3: 

Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Dr George Goh 


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is increasingly recognised as the most common chronic liver disease worldwide, with the potential to progress to liver cirrhosis and cancer (HCC). As traditional risk factors for HCC such as viral hepatitis B and C have been relatively nullified by effective treatments and other measures, NAFLD, bolstered by the growing obesity and metabolic epidemic, has emerged as an important etiological risk factor for HCC. With the rising prevalence of NAFLD, it can be expected that non-alcoholic steatohepatitis-related HCC will significantly contribute to the HCC disease burden in the future. This takes on added gravity in Asia, where socioeconomic changes seen with rapid modernisation, increasing affluence and a shift towards a more sedentary lifestyle and obesogenic dietary patterns predisposed to the development of NAFLD.

The epidemiological evidence, clinical characteristics and biological plausibility linking NAFLD and HCC will be explored, so as to develop increasing awareness, better understanding and management strategies to combat this emerging HCC variant.


Topic 4: 


Early Detection of Gastric Cancer – Results from the Gastric Cancer Epidemiology, Clinical and Genetics Programme (GCEP) Study

Assoc Prof Yeoh Khay Guan

Gastric cancer (GC) is the third most common cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide, with one million new cases a year. In the 21st century, our aim should be to detect gastric cancer at an early stage, which improves chances of recovery. A prospective pre-disease high-risk cohort (GCEP) comprising 3,000 participants aged 50 and above (mean age 59±7 years) were recruited for the study.

Over five years, 21 participants developed early gastric neoplasia (EGN). Eight risk factors (RF) were identified, with four of them identified by the most parsimonious model in risk prediction:
age over 70, smoking, serum pepsinogen, and H. pylori seropositivity, with AUC=0.74 (95%CI 0.64-0.87). 25% of the cohort was identified as a high-risk group. It was composed of individuals with more than two out of four RF identified, and who were at a 13-fold increased risk of EGN, and included 57% of EGN.

Intestinal Metaplasia (IM) is a precancerous lesion. More than half of the GCEP participants (52%) developed IM. Among the IM participants, 68% had focal IM, 17% had antrum dominant multifocal IM, 8% had diffuse-type IM. Incomplete IM (Type II and Type III IM) is associated with a high risk for EGN, with odds ratio of 8.4 (95%CI 1.9-37.8). Multifocal IM and positive MUC5AC expression were two independent risk factors for EGN.

*Information is correct at time of update