Making the right decision in kidney transplantation: current controversies on clinical and ethical issues

DESCARTES, an official ERA-EDTA Working Group, is pleased to announce the organisation of ‘Making the right decision in kidney transplantation: current controversies on clinical and ethical issues’ an educational event tailor-made for trainees and young specialists in nephrology and transplantation to be held at the John McIntyre Conference Centre in Edinburgh (UK) on October 12, 2018.

This event is focused on current clinical and ethical controversies in the field of kidney transplantation and is aimed at increasing the awareness of the risks in living donation and how to select the best donor for the recipient, how to efficiently communicate this to prospective recipients as well at increasing knowledge about how best to transplant incompatible pairs and the optimal induction therapy. Participants will also learn more about new matching algorithms and novel HLA insights.

The meeting is organised as a series of lectures, a pro and con debate and a workshop discussion on specific topics. A special part of the meeting will be dedicated to communicating the risks of living donation to prospective recipients whilst, the interactive sessions / workshops will focus on marginal deceased donors, transplanting incompatible pairs and induction therapy.

Keynote Speakers

We are thrilled to welcome the following keynote speakers:

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Prof. Luuk Hilbrands

Nijmegen, The Netherlands

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Prof. Gabriel Oniscu

Chair of the Organising Committee

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Dr. Geir Mjøen

Oslo, Norway


Prof. Sual Caner

Heidelberg, Germany

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Prof. Julio Pascual

Barcelona, Spain

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Dr. Rachel Hellemans

Antwerp, Belgium

Conference Programme

The programme below is intended to be used as an at-a-glance overview of the conference.
For a more detailed breakdown of the whole programme including parallel sessions, please download the conference programme.

12 October 2018

DESCARTES invites specialists in nephrology and transplantation to submit an abstract on kidney transplantation (any topic) following the NDT format instructions: max. 250~300 words (excl. names and affiliations); four paragraphs entitled ‘Background', `Methods', `Results' and `Conclusions'.

The 3 best abstracts will be presented at this educational event. The 3 best abstract authors will be granted free accommodation and travel to Edinburgh and will receive a grant of EUR 500, EUR 300 and EUR 200 respectively according to their ranking. Submission must be made via email to The deadline for abstract submission is September 15, 2018.


The authors of the best three abstract will be invited to present their work in a plenary session.


The ERA-EDTA offers EUR 1,500 in travel grants to nephrologists who are 40 years old or younger, plus one year ERA EDTA membership (to young persons who have never been members  of  ERA EDTA  ONLY)

Click here to learn about travel grant opportunities.


The John McIntyre Conference Centre is located at the Pollock Halls Campus of The University of Edinburgh, situated at the foot of the royal Holyrood Park and Arthur's Seat, and a short walk to all the main tourist attractions.

Map key: Venue Accomodation Map Icon Accomodation Drinks / dinner venue Map Icon Drinks / dinner venue Place of interest Map Icon Place of interest
About Descartes Working Group

The DESCARTES Working Group of the ERA-EDTA (‘European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association’) plays an active role in the advancement of kidney science and care. The ultimate aim is to sustainably improve the outcome of patients who have received a kidney transplantation.

Improving outcomes has many different facets and aspects. It is not about changing one parameter only but involves complex follow-up care that takes many issues into consideration.

Doctors who manage patients before, during and after transplantation need up-to-date knowledge, specific clinical skills and ethical commitment.

This explains the DESCARTES working group’s focus on education. The Working Group organizes CME courses throughout the year in different countries.

Apart from organising educational events, DESCARTES publishes opinion papers and literature reviews and are involved in the guideline work carried out by ‘European Renal Best Practice’ (ERBP).

Descartes Working Group website