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Hellenic Society of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology – A brief history

The idea to establish a national pharmacological society in Greece was initially conceived in the early ‘80s by Marios Marselos, now Professor Emeritus of Pharmacology at the University of Ioannina and was immediately embraced by the now late professors Christina Spyraki and Zeta Papadopoulou Daifoti, both at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens at the time.  The three of them pursued the issue with great energy and motivation and the Hellenic Society of Pharmacology, as it was called at the time, was officially born on March 29, 1984, in Athens, with 21 pharmacologists, all faculty members in Greek medical schools, serving as its founding members.  Following its adolescence in the ‘90s, the Society underwent its rite of passage into adulthood in 2000, when the 1st Panhellenic Congress of Pharmacology took place in Athens, under the presidency of Professor Michalis Maragoudakis of the University of Patras.  Ever since, a Congress of Pharmacology is held on even years, while one-day meetings are organized in the intervening years. In 2006, the then Associate Professor Charis Liapi became the first ever Greek Pharmacologist to be elected in EPHAR’s Executive Committee. Professor Manfred Goethert was the first President of EPHAR to participate in a Society Meeting, in 2007, only to be back again in 2008 as the plenary lecturer of the 5th Panhellenic Congress in Athens. Professor Manolopoulos from the University of Thrace was the first delegate of the Society to EACPT and helped organize the first EACPT Summer School ever held in Greece, in 2009. In 2014, the British Pharmacological Society and the Immunopharmacology Section of the IUPHAR were officially present in the 8th Panhellenic Congress of the Society.

Τhe Hellenic Society of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology as it is known today, was formed by the unification, in 2012, of the Hellenic Society of Pharmacology with the Hellenic Society of Clinical Pharmacology, in a groundbreaking move aimed at bringing together basic scientists and clinicians by creating an environment that encourages synergy and collaboration in pharmacological research.

The Society is an EPHAR and IUPHAR member since its inception and appoints representatives to General Assemblies of both international bodies, while it became a member of EACPT in 2006. Besides the individual presentations of its members’ work, the Society participates actively in all major international events by organizing workshops and round tables. It has made a successful bid to organize the 2020 EACPT Congress in Athens, which, following a two-year postponement due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is to be finally held in Athens in 25-28 July 2022. Finally, Society’s members serve in various positions in the EMA, involved in matters of drug approval and policy. 

The Society has undoubtedly grown over the past decades and will continue to do so in the years to come. Its members are committed to working together with colleagues worldwide to help shape the future of Pharmacology in the face of the constant scientific and societal changes, putting special emphasis in helping a new generation of pharmacologists meet the challenges and opportunities of the future.  

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