CASL's HepatoSite - our online learning portal - is now online, visit Member Portal to Learn More

Current Award Recipients

2024 Award Recipients

CLF-CASL Gold Medal Award (awarded to an exceptional individual in hepatology, who has made outstanding contributions to liver research):

Gerarls Minuk Gold Medal Lecture

Dr. Gerald Y. Minuk, Professor Emeritus at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada, founded the section of hepatology in the department of internal medicine and led it from 2002 to 2019. A co-founder of the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver (CASL), he was instrumental in introducing the discipline of hepatology to Canada. Minuk has published hundreds of manuscripts and presented his research internationally.

Distinguished Service Award (awarded to a CASL member in recognition of their outstanding contributions to CASL and to the field of liver disease in Canada):

Colina Yim headshot -CASL - Distinguished Services Award

Colina Yim, NP, RN(EC), BScN, MN, is a Staff Nurse Practitioner at Toronto Centre for Liver Disease, Francis Family Liver Clinic and specializes in Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and Advanced Liver Disease Management while contributing to Chinese Hepatitis B Education Peer Support Group.

Visiting Professorship Award

Constantine (Dean) Karvellas is a Professor of Hepatology and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Alberta. He has been an attending intensivist in the E. Garner King General Systems Intensive Care Unit since 2009. He is also involved with the Liver Transplant programme as a Hepatologist. He completed his medical degree at the University of Alberta in 2001. He went on to complete residency training in Gastroenterology (2006), and Critical Care Medicine (2009) at the University of Alberta. In 2006, he received the CAG/Schering/CIHR research fellowship and completed advanced training in hepatic failure at the Institute of Liver Studies, King’s College Hospital in London,UK under Dr. Julia Wendon. In 2011, he completed a master’s of science in epidemiology through the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr Karvellas has been active within the Society of Critical Care Medicine (co-chair of recently published liver management guideline) and the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (Chair of the Acute on Chronic Liver Failure SIG and co-chair of recently published ACLF Clinical Practiced Guidance). He is an associate editor of the Journal of Hepatology. Dr Karvellas is the only Canadian co-investigator of the NIH-funded US Acute Liver Failure Study Group. He has over 150 peer-reviewed publications reflecting his interests in acute and acute chronic liver failure, liver transplantation and extracorporeal liver support.

Education Excellence Award (recognizes a CASL member who demonstrates exceptional scholarly activities, leadership in medical education, significant involvement in the development and/or implementation of educational programs and innovations, excellence in teaching, and a commitment to administrative duties relating to medical education):

Dr. Vince Bain received his MD degree at the University of Alberta followed by residencies in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. He did a research/transplant Hepatology fellowship at Kings College Hospital in London. He has served as program director in Gastroenterology as well as in the Advanced Hepatology fellowship at the University of Alberta. He is proud of his role in initiating the Liver transplant program in 1989 and served as its medical director until 2023. He most enjoys complex cases requiring multidisciplinary care and teaching residents and fellows in the advanced hepatology fellowship program. He has taken great joy from his teaching and feels that it has made him a better physician. Dr. Vince served on the casl education committee, including as chair as well as doing a term as president of CASL.

CIHR-INMD-CASL Early Career Research Partnership Prize (The CIHR-INMD-CASL Early Career Researcher Partnership Prize (“the Partnership Prize”) is designed to recognize exceptional young investigators with an interest specifically in some aspect of liver disease, and who are a member of the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver)

Dr. Henry Nguyen obtained his Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada and completed both his Internal Medicine residency and Gastroenterology and Hepatology fellowship training at the University of Calgary (FRCPC). After completing clinical training, he was awarded the Alberta Innovates Clinician Fellowship Award that allowed him to pursue an additional 3-year basic science microbiome and immunology fellowship at New York University with renown immunologist Dan Littman.

Dr. Nguyen is currently an Assistant Professor at UCalgary and dual appointed in the Departments of Medicine and Microbiology, Immunology, and Infectious Diseases (MIID). His research program, Precision Medicine in Hepatology, aims to identify new diagnostic tools and therapeutic options for patients with chronic liver disease. This program spans the entire spectrum of fundamental science to clinical translation. His research involves performing mechanistic studies in animal models, utilizing molecular tools to interrogate human bio banked samples, and evaluating patient outcomes in clinical trials. A major portfolio within his research program is focused on evaluating the impact of the gut-liver axis in Metabolic Dysfunction Associated Steatotic Liver Disease. In this portfolio he aims to mechanistically define avenues with the gut-liver axis by which microbiome perturbations and the associated host immune and/or parenchymal response can alter MASLD outcomes.

As an ECR, Dr. Nguyen has been awarded the Canadian Foundation for Innovation John R. Evans Leaders fund along with various research, abstract and young investigator awards through the American Association for the Study of the Liver Diseases (AASLD) and European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL). Most recently, he was selected for the 2023 AASLD-EASL Masterclass and the 2024 TRIANGLE (training a new generation of researchers in gastroenterology and liver) Early Career Researcher Award.

CASL Research Excellence Award (This award is given to a CASL member who demonstrates research excellence and was lead author of a high-impact research article published during the last calendar year.):

Dr. Adam Gehring is the Scientific Director of the Schwartz Reisman Liver Research Centre, Senior Scientist at the Toronto Center for Liver Disease and Associate Professor in the Department of Immunology at the University of Toronto. He runs a translational, human HBV immunology research lab focused on liver pathogenesis and immunotherapy. His primary interest lies in defining the mechanisms driving liver inflammation during HBV-related hepatitis using functional and transcriptomic approaches in liver biopsies. He also runs an immune monitoring lab for the Toronto Centre for Liver Disease to process and analyze immune responses in Phase 1 – 3 clinical studies for novel therapeutic agents targeting HBV.

CASL PSC Partners Seeking a Cure Award (This award recognizes the best abstract on primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) presented at the Canadian Liver Meeting, and is made possible by a generous donation from PSC Partners Seeking a Cure Canada):

Dr. Audrey-Anne Lavoie

CASL Clinical Hepatology Fellowships

Dr. Mary Sedarous completed medical training at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England followed by internal medicine residency at McMaster University and Gastroenterology Fellowship at Queen’s University. Dr. Sedarous also earned a Masters of Quality Improvement at the University of Toronto with a focus on enhancing the quality of care for patients with chronic liver disease under the supervision of Dr. Hirschfield. Dr. Sedarous is set to embark on a Clinical Hepatology Fellowship at the University of Toronto (University Health Network) supported by the prestigious CASL-CLF Clinical Fellowship Award. Driven by commitment to scholarly excellence, Dr. Sedarous aspires to elevate patient care on an individual level, particularly within marginalized populations. Her research pursuits include retrospective cohort analyses in specific populations delineating outcome disparities in groups such as racialized populations, non-English primary language, homeless populations, and inter-hospital transfers. The unveiling of outcome disparities in marginalized populations serves as a catalyst for promoting equitable reforms, fostering her dedication to maintain a heightened vigilance in the care of these patients.

Tamoor Afzaal, BMSc, MD, FRCPC (Internal Medicine) is currently a Post-Graduate-Year (PGY)-5 Gastroenterology Resident at Western University, working at the London Health Science Centre and associated hospitals. After receiving his Bachelors in Medical Sciences (BMSc) at Western University, he completed my MD at the University of Toronto. This was followed by Internal Medicine Residency at McMaster University, and currently completing his Gastroenterology Fellowship at Western University. He plans to continue his training at Western University and has been accepted to the Transplant Hepatology Program. In the future, he hopes to be affiliated with an academic institution to continue his passion for teaching, mentorship, and educational scholarship as a hepatologist. He is passionate about pursuing scholarly work within the field of Metabolic DysfuncRon-Associated Steatotic Liver Disease (MASLD). He also looks forward to gaining formal training in clinical education and teaching.