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News from Serbia

Contributed by Snežana Jovičić
Institute of Medical Biochemistry Clinical Centre of Serbia, Belgrade,
and Member of the IFCC eNews Working Group

New Officers Appointed In The Society Of Medical Biochemists Of Serbia

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Snežana Jovičić

The Excecutive Board of the Society of Medical Biochemists of Serbia (SMBS) on the meeting held 12 April 2012 appointed new officers for Society Board and Representations.

Prof. Dr Nada Majkić-Singh is appointed for National Representative and dr Zorica Šimarac for President of the Society of the Medical Biochemists of Serbia. According to the Statute of the SMBS, the Assembly of the Society is constituted of actual membership in the current year. Society is managed by the Executive Board whose work is controled by the Supervising Board. Members of the newly elected Executive Board are  Zorica Šumarac - President of SMBS,  Nada Majkić-Singh - Past President, Tatjana Vodnik - Secretary General, Snežana Jovičić - treasurer,  Svetlana Ignjatović - member, JelenaOšap - member, and Velibor Canić - member. Three members constitute the Supervising Board, whose mandate is limited to only one term during which they cannot be members of other Committees of the SMBS. President of the Supervising Board is Emina Čolak.

Within the SMBS operate fifteen Committees with five to nine members. These are the Scientific Committee (which acts also as the Committee for Congress Activities); Committee for Publishing Activities; Committee for "Magistra Milica Marković" Foundation; Committee for Laboratory Standardization; Committee for Laboratory Practice Organization; Committee for Medical Laboratory Accreditation; Committee for External Quality Control; Committee for Professional Engagement of Young Biochemists; Committee for IT Activities; Committee for Cooperation with IFCC, EFLM, BCLF and Related National Organizations; Committee for Cooperation with Industry; Ethical Committee; Awards Committee; and Committee for History of Medical Biochemistry.

Center for Continuous Medical Education of the SMBS works on developing and organizing courses of continuous medical education. It has the Program Council, constituted of Presidents of all the Committees of the SMBS, and the President of the Council is the Executive Director of the SMBS.

The terms of the new officers started 1 October 2012. We all hope that their work will be as successful as their predecessors'.

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Prof. dr Nada Majkić-Singh,
National Representative

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Dr Zorica Šunarac, President

Society of Medical Biochemists of Serbia: The Fifteenth Annual Ivan Berkeš Conference

Scientific Conference dedicated to the life of and work of the esteemed prof. dr Ivan Berkeš, one of the founders of medical biochemistry in Yugoslavia, is organized every year under the auspices of the Society of Medical Biochemists of Serbia (SMBS), Scientific Foundation "Professor Ivan Berkeš", Institute for Medical Biochemistry of the Clinical Center of Serbia, and Institute for Medical Biochemistry of the Military Medical Academy. The Conference is the occasion when the best graduate students of the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade are awarded by the Scientific Foundation "Professor Ivan Berkeš".

The 2012 Annual Scientific Conference "Professor Ivan Berkeš" was held on December 4th at Military Medical Academy in Belgrade. After the traditional welcoming address of colonel Prof. dr Marijan Novaković, Head of Military Medical Academy, and Prof. dr Zorica Vujić, Dean of Faculty of Pharmacy, the chair of the event, prof. dr Nada Majkić-Singh, together with the President of the SMBS, dr Zorica Šumarac, presented awards of the Foundation. This year's recipients were Marija Todosijević, Master of Pharmacy, and Mladen Stankov, Master of Pharmacy-Medical Biochemist. During the scientific part of the program, traditionally, this year's defended doctoral thesis at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Faculty of Medicine of the Universities of Belgrade and Niš were presented.

The opening lecture entitled "Enzymes: small machines in our life" was presented by Prof. dr N. Nuray Ulusu from Ankara, Turkey. The four doctorates were presented by dr Zorica Šumarac (Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade), dr Radmila Obrenović (Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade), dr Sanja Stanković (Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade) and dr Zorica Dimitrijević (Faculty of Medicine, University of Niš), while dr Emina Čolak (Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade) presented her subspecialist thesis. The conference was closed with the promotion of the book "Clinical Enzymology" by Prof. dr Nada Majkić-Singh.

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Awarded best students from Faculty of Pharmacy with members of the Scientific Foundation "Ivan Berkeš".
From left to right: Z. Šumarac, S. Ignjatović, N. Majkić-Singh,  M. Stankov, M. Todosijević

News from India

Dr. Rajiv R Sinha, Secretary, ACBI

Activities of the Association of Clinical Biochemists of India in 2012

The year started with the newly elected office bearers elected at the General Body meeting of the Association of Clinical Biochemists of India held in Mumbai on December 5, 2011, taking up their office. The office bearers elected were :


Dr. Neelima Singh
Professor & Head, Department of Biochemistry,
G. R. Medical College, Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh - India.


Dr. K. P. Sinha

Vice President

Dr. Abhay Pratap, Bokaro, Jharkand
Dr. Jayashree Bhattacharya, New Delhi

Immediate Past President

Dr. Sucheta Dandekar,  Mumbai, Maharashtra

General Secretary

Dr. Rajiv R. Sinha
Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry
Nalanda Medical College - Patna-800001. Bihar. India

Joint secretary

Dr. Monika Gupta, Jaipur, Rajasthan
Dr Sanjeev Singh, Gwalior, M.P.


Dr. K. R. Prasad, Patna, Bihar

Editor, IJCB

Dr. Praveen Sharma, Jodhpur, Rajasthan

Regional Meetings

During this year nine scientific activities were organized by State / Regional chapters of ACBI in different parts of the country.

  • The Delhi State branch & Department of Biochemistry, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi organized a symposium on 21st. January 2012 titled :Opening New Horizon in Clinical Biochemistry" with Prof. L.M. Srivastav & Dr Anjali Manocha being the lead persons for the symposia.
  • Dr.Shyamali Pal and Dr.Jayanta Dey, under the aegis of The West Bengal State Chapter organized a one day CME on 12th February,2011 in Kolkata on "Quality Assessment  as per ISO 15189" . Dr. P. D. Sawant, Lead Assessor NABL and CAP Inspector was the Guest speaker of this CME.
  • Department of Biochemistry, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, Karnataka in association with the local chapter of ACBI conducted a CME on "Glycomics" on October 8th 2011 at KMC, Mangalore. Over 150 delegates from different Medical Colleges in Karnataka attended the CME. The CME was followed by ACBI Mangalore chapter meeting where Dr. Poornima Manjrekar was elected President of the Mangalore Chapter.
  • A CME on "Current Trends in Laboratory Practices" was conducted by the Department of Biochemistry, MGM Medical College, Navi Mumbai on 25th. November 2011 under the auspices of ACBI Maharashtra state chapter. Around 110 delegates from all over Maharashtra had registered for the programme. Dr. Padma Chavan was the organizing Secretary.
  • The Department of Biochemistry & Immunology of Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital & Medical Research Institute, Mumbai in collaboration with the Association of Clinical Biochemists of India, Maharashtra Branch, hosted the  'Total Quality Management Seminar' on January 7, 2012.The Department of Biochemistry & Immunology of Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital & Medical Research Institute, Mumbai in collaboration with the Association of Clinical Biochemists of India, Maharashtra Branch, hosted the  'Total Quality Management Seminar', which  was an attempt in reviving quality awareness. The event took place in the convention centre of Kokilaben Hospital on January 7, 2012.  Dr. Barnali Das, organizing secretary of this seminar, started the scientific session by outlining the background and motivation behind this event. The technical programme included 7 presentations by distinguished national & international speakers from Quality Council of India (QCI), College of American Pathologists (CAP), NABH and NABL. Dr. Girdhar J Gyani, Secretary General, QCI & CEO, NABH elaborated the role of accreditation in improving patient safety and quality of care in his keynote address. Dr. Bharati Jhaveri, CAP Governor, delivered her keynote address on CAP accreditation overview. Dr. Ronald B Lepoff, CAP inspector, spoke about physical space & safety requirements from the view point of accreditation. Ms. Adrienne Malta, CAP inspector, detailed the methods for fulfilling CAP's competency assessment requirements.
  • A Seminar-cum-Workshop was organized by the Association of Clinical Biochemists of India (Kerala Chapter) on 29th of July 2012, at Hotel Casino, Trissur. The function was Presided by Dr T Vijayakumar, Former Dean and Director at School of Health Sciences, University of Calicut and was formally inaugurated by Dr D.M. Vasudevan, Former Dean of Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences and and Past President of ACBI. A special session on was a Hands on training and Workshop on "Equipment Calibration in Laboratory" by M/s Medical Engineering & Services, Trissur.
  • A half a day CME-III meeting was conducted by DR. R. Arivazhagan, Associate Prof. & Head of the Clinical Bio Chemistry Dept., Cancer Institute, Adayar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu on 15th September 2012.
  • Haryana Chapter of the ACBI organized a Conference & CME under the guidance of Dr. Harbans Lal, Sr. Prof & Head, Department of Biochemistry, Maharaja Agrasen Medical College Agroha (Hisar), on 29th Sept 2012. Thirty-seven research paperswere presented in the poster session. Five papers were given best paper awards.

39th. Annual National Conference Of Acbi (Acbicon 2012)

The year 2012 ended with the 39th Annual National conference of the Association, ACBICON 2012, at Ranchi, the capital of the lush green state of Jharkhand, which was successfully conducted during December 11 to 14, 2011 at Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences and Khel Gaon Sports Complex, Ranchi with Dr. Abhay Pratap as Organizing Secretary. The conference was attended by about 650 delegates from India and abroad. Two Pre-conference CME's were held on 11th December on " New approaches to Medical Education in Biochemistry" & "Implementation of good laboratory practice". In the post-lunch session, the IFCC Task Force for Young Scientist held its session with the theme of "Clinical Chemistry to Clinical laboratory science". It was addressed amongst others, by  Dr. Bernard Gouget, representing the IFCC on the panel. The main scientific session started on 12th. December 2012 with Revered Swami Sarvalokanandaji Maharaj,  Ramakrishna Mission Hospital Kolkata, giving his blessings for the success of the conference and exhorting biochemists to do their best for the upliftment of society. This was followed by a plenary lecture on "Risk management beyond patient safety" which was delivered by Dr Endang Hoyaranda, Secretary, APFCB. The K. L. Gupta Memorial Oration was delivered by Dr. Raghunadharao, Professor of Medical Oncology at Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences, Hyderabad, This was followed by the Taranath Memorial Popular lecture series Oration which was delivered by Dr. T. Venkatesh, Professor emeritus, St. Johns Medical College, Bangalore.

Inaugural Ceremony Lighting the lamp.pngInaugural Ceremony: Lighting the lamp

The Inaugural function was held in the evening and was inaugurated by Dr. Tulsi Mahato, Director, Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences, Ranchi. During the inaugural function, ACBI-A.J. Thakur award, K.P.Sinha-P.S.Krishnan Award and Fellowship of ACBI were conferred. Also, Dr. Abhay Pratap was installed as the new President of the Association  of Clinical Biochemists of India. The inaugural function also saw the felicitation of Dr. P. S. Murthy, Past president of the association and also former editor of Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry, for his immense contribution to the ACBI. This was followed by a beautiful cultural programme showcasing the different dance forms of Jharkhand, especially Chhau Dance.

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CHhau Dance Form : during Inaugural Function

Scientific programme of the conference comprised of 6 oration lectures, 3 Industrial workshops, 46 symposia on various aspects of clinical biochemistry and laboratory medicine,12 invited lectures, award paper presentation sessions, free paper sessions and a special session on "Lunch with Experts".

Dr.  M. V. Kodliwadmath, Professor & Head,, Department of Biochemistry, Navodaya Medical College, Raichur, Karnataka, delivered the Dr. T. N. Pattabiraman Oration. Dr. Suman Bala Sharma, Professor of Biochemistry University College of Medical Sciences & GTB Hospital, Delhi delivered the Seth G.S. Medical College & KEM Hospital Oration. Dr. Nibhriti Das, Professor, Department of Biochemistry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi delivered the Mrs. & Dr. G. P. Talwar Oration.

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Dr T Venkatesh delivering Taranath Oration

Four Industrial workshops were held during the conference. The first was held on 12th December which was sponsored by Johnson & Johnson-OCD Division where Dr. P. D. Sawant  spoke on "Lean Labs". The second workshop, which was sponsored by Nicholas Piramal, was on the topic of "Monitoring of Acute & Chronic Kidney dysfunction with Cystatin C, was delivered by Dr. Hektor. Dr. Barnali Das, of Kokilaben Dhirubahi Ambani Hospital, Mumbai delivered talk on "Essentials in prenatal Screening"  which was sponsored by Roche. The "Lunch with Experts" session was quite successfully conducted  by Dr. A. S. Kanagasabapathy with Dr. Endang Hoyaranda, Dr Bernard Gouget as experts. The symposia were held on various topics namely cardiovascular system related disorders, Free Radicals & anti-oxidants, Diabetes, Endocrine & Hematologic disorders, Instrumentation in Lab practices & Animal experiments, Maladies of Reproductive system & Topics associated with pregnancy and Functional Disorders and as many as 46 invited speakers of eminence in their respective fields delivered lectures in these symposia. Eight young scientists were awarded with different ACBI Best Paper awards & Travel Award.

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Valedictory Function

The AFMC Quiz was a hotly contested event with Dr. Rajni Dawar of Lady Harding Medical College, New Delhi walking away with the First prize trophy & cash of Rs. 10,000/- . 14th December saw the curtain coming down on the 4 days of academic feast with the valedictory function where all the award winners were felicitated and delegates congratulated Dr Abhay Pratap and his team for organizing a great conference.


  1. Sri A. J. Thakur Distinguished Clinical Biochemist Award for the 2012 was given to Dr, R. Selvakumar, Professor & Head, Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Christian Medical College, vellore, Tamil Nadu
  2. Fellowship of ACBI (FACBI) was awarded to Dr. Shyamali Pal from Kolkata.
  3. Awadhesh Saran Memorial Oration Award was bestowed on Professor H. R. Nagendra, Vice-Chancellor, Yoga University, Bangalore
  4. K. L. Gupta Memorial Oration Award was bestowed on Dr. D. Raghunadharao, Professor of Medical Oncology, Nizam's Instutute of Medical Sciences, Hyderabad.
  5. Seth G.S. Medical College & KEM Hospital Oration Award was bestowed on Dr. Suman Bala Sharma, Professor of Biochemistry University College of Medical Sciences & GTB Hospital, Delhi.
  6. Mrs. & Dr. G. P. Talwar Oration Award was bestowed on Dr. Nibhriti Das, Professor, Department of Biochemistry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi
  7. Dr. T. N. Pattabiraman Oration Award was bestowed on Dr.  M. V. Kodliwadmath, Professor & Head,, Department of Biochemistry, Navodaya Medical College, Raichur, Karnataka
  8. Taranath Memorial Popular Lecture Oration Award was bestowed on  Dr. Thuppil Venkatesh, Emeritus Professor, Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics, National Referral Centre for Lead poisoning in India, St. John's National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore & Principal Advisor, Quality Council of India.

The next Annual conference of Association of Clinical Biochemists of India will be held at New Delhi (India) in November-December 2013 with Dr. Jayashree Bhattacharya, Principal, Vardhaman Medical College & Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi as the Organizing secretary. More news will appear on website :

Plenary Lecture.pngPlenary Lecture - Dr Endang Hayoranda, Indonesia

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Swami ji addressing the delegates

News from the AFCC

by Prof Vanessa Steenkamp, President of the AFCC

In the two months since the General Conference in Malaysia the AFCC has already travelled some way down the long road. In December the president of the AFCC, Prof Vanessa Steenkamp attended the First international conference of the African Society for Laboratory Medicine. She co-convened the symposium entitled "International collaboration with ASLM to strengthen laboratory medicine" with the CEO of ASLM, Dr Tsehaynesh Messele. The aim of the session was for attendants to appreciate the synergistic outcomes of effective global laboratory partnerships and to understand the vital role of international collaboration to strengthen laboratory medicine.

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The CEO of ASLM, Dr Tsehaynesh Messele and Prof Vanessa Steenkamp, President of the AFCC

Prof Shaarawy, President of the Egyptian Society for Clinical Chemistry and representative of Egypt to the AFCC also participated in this session.

Prof Steenkamp delivered a talk entitled "Joining hands to improve laboratory medicine".  In order to achieve this she suggested:

  • Addressing health priorities specific to the continent/country
  • Improving quality of results
  • Improving health outcomes
  • Greater coherence on the continent (globally)

Furthermore, she mentioned that if these "goals" were to be realised the following were required: engagement in partnerships, a strategic plan with joint action, strengthening health systems with knowledge, science, technology as well as governance and leadership, dissemination of knowledge, to promote and monitor the implementation of standards and to provide technical support and build capacity.


Three more countries were welcomed to the AFCC family: Botswana, Egypt and Ethiopia.  Both Egypt and Ethiopia have formal Clinical chemistry societies which are known as the Egyptian Society of Clinical Chemistry (represented by Prof Shaarawy) and the Ethiopian Medical Laboratory Association (represented by Prof Akalu), respectively.  Currently Botswana, represented by Prof Ishmael Kasvosve, does not have any official society. We would like to congratulate Rwanda and especially Dr Pierrot Tugirimana on the successful formation of The Rwanda Society of Pathologists, earlier this year.

The website of the AFCC was launched at the end of January ( The AFCC will be holding its 3rd congress in Cape Town, South Africa 28- 31 July, in conjunction with the Laboratory Medicine Congress ( The abstract deadline has been extended to the 28 February 2013. The congress will be preceded by a Laboratory Management workshop as well as a hands-on 5 day Molecular Biology training course. Both courses are supported by the IFCC.


6th International Conference on Quality Second Experts Meeting from Latin America
Mexico City, June 27-29, 2012

By Rosa I. SIERRA-AMOR, Corresponding Member IFCC News

Volcano.pngTo give continuity to the first expert meeting that took place in 2010 in Cancun, Mexico, the 6th International Conference on Quality hosted a three days Round Table discussions meeting with scientists from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Spain and Mexico chairing the sessions. Topics on Quality Control, Microbiology, Diabetes, Serology and Blood Transfusion were discussed extensively, allowing participants to listen to the expert´s presentation and summary of a full day of activities on one day conference a day after that was transmitted by internet based connection along the region. In this occasion, 120 selected participants were invited to join the Round Table discussions as national experts and based on their field of expertise. The venue was the Tlatelolco University Centre, former Foreign Relations Building located in the northern part of Mexico City, in Mexico.

The welcome message was given by Octavio Zendejas, director BIO RAD Latin America; he encouraged participants to attend these kinds of scientific activities that in Latin America are emerging as the main source of continuing education. Immediately after and by Skype video conference from Glasgow, England, Prof. Graham Beastall, President of IFCC, gave a very charming and eloquent speech in Spanish to welcome the attendees located at the 38 sites all along Latin America. Prof Beastall congratulated the organizers, and was very pleased to see that topics on traceability, microbiology and blood transfusion were discussed. He congratulated the organizers for their vision and commitment - with special thanks for the support of Bio-rad: "This is a topic and a model of delivery that deserves wider recognition and use".  And to finalize, Dr Rosa I. SIERRA-AMOR, the academic coordinator of the scientific activity thanked the invited speakers and attendees for making the 6th International Conference on Quality the IFCC activity of the year in Latin America.

Venues were located from north to south in Mexico, and in Argentina (Buenos Aires and Cordoba), Colombia (Bogota and Medellin), Chile, Ecuador (Quito and Guayaquil), Panama, Peru, Paraguay, Uruguay, Venezuela (Caracas, Táchira and Puerto Ordaz) and Dominican Republic. These three days of conferences, hold a total number of attendees from day to day, exceeding the organizers ´expectations of 2500 that divided by day, 1386 attendees were on day 1; 862 on day 2; and 1125 on day 3 respectively.

The first four Round Table discussions on Quality Control were on Traceability and Uncertainty in the clinical laboratory chaired by Prof. Javier GELLA from the University Autonomous of Barcelona, Spain; Tools to evaluate the analytical performance in the clinical laboratory by Dr Gustavo MACALLINI, from Laboratorio Hidalgo, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Validation and verification of measurements systems, by Dr Eduardo BRAMBILA, from the Benemerita Autonomous University of Puebla, Mexico; and Options to define metrological requirements in blood chemistry, by Prof. Xavier FUENTES-ARDERIU from University Hospital of Bellvitge, Barcelona, Spain.

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Prof. Javier GELLA and participants of Round Table 1: Traceability and Uncertainty in the Clinical Laboratory

On day two, dedicated to Microbiology and Diabetes, the Round Table discussion were divided as follows:  Identification of fungal opportunists on immunocompromised patients, by Jesus RESENDIZ, MS, from the Federico Gomez Children´s Hospital, México;  Significance of nosocomial bacterial disease by Dr Alethse de la TORRE, from the National Institute of Nutrition and Medical Sciences SZ, Mexico; HbA1c standardization presented by Dr Aida PORRAS from Quik Bogota, Colombia, and Diagnostic tools on hemoglobinophaties by Dr Bertha IBARRA, from the Genetic Division, IMSS West National Medical Centre in Guadalajara, Mexico. A plenary conference was given by Dr Guillermo RUIZ-ARGUELLES, from Ruiz Clinic in Puebla, Mexico, who spoke about the Mytes and Realities of the Hemoglobinopathies in México.

During the third day of conferences, the morning sessions were chaired by Dr Amadeo SAEZ-ALQUEZAR from Brazil National EQAS Program on Serology discussing the topic on Internal and External Quality Control in Serology; and, Dr Jaime VASQUEZ, from the IMSS Blood Transfusion Unit in Coahuila, Mexico who discussed the topic on Blood safety in Serology.  The afternoon topics were on fetal awareness and Rh variants presented by Ana-Claudia PERON from BIO RAD Brazil; and Dr Amadeo CORTES-BUELVAS, from the Blood Bank Unit at the Del Valle University Hospital in Cali, Colombia who also discussed the importance of serotyping in donors.

All Round Table discussions were presented as video conference live from Mexico City to all sites a day after, and with the help and sponsorship of BIO RAD distributors who organized locally their activities.

To conclude, Dr Hugo Baez Medina, Marketing director, BIO RAD Latin-American thanked all sites and participants, technical staff and Round Table discussions assistants for making the 6th International Conference on Quality a very successful event.  Bio-Rad Latin America is a facilitating instrument of continuous education in quality, both in the clinical laboratory and now in transfusion medicine, and in other related topics such as Microbiology, and Diabetes.

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Organizers and Speakers of the 6th International Conference on Quality:
Hugo BAEZ (MX), Amadeo SAEZ (BR), Xavier FUENTES-ARDERIU(ES), Rosa SIERRA-AMOR (MX), Ana Claudia PERON (BR).

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