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Therap Adv Gastroenterol. 2008 July; 1(1): 5–6.
PMCID: PMC3002490

Editorial

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Welcome to the inaugural issue of Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology. This exciting new journal will publish high-quality, peer-reviewed research articles, reviews and scholarly comment on pioneering efforts and innovative studies relating to medicine and pharmacology in the field of gastroenterology and hepatology. For this first year, we will be publishing an issue every two months, with the hope of moving to monthly publication within a few years.

In this endeavor, I am ably assisted by our Associate Editors, Dr Gary Lichtenstein and Dr Ray Chung, as well as a formidable talent on our International Editorial Board. The world is indeed flat, and this Board covers four continents and ten countries and thus reaches into many sections of the gastroenterology community worldwide. Our collective aim is to publish cutting-edge articles over the spectrum of conditions in this intriguing field of medicine.

For a number of reasons, we believe that the introduction of this journal into the medical community is timely. While gastroenterology remains a specialty highly focused on ‘diagnostics’, the field has come a long way since the introduction of H2-receptor antagonists in the 1970s and proton pump inhibitors in the late 1980s. With the discovery of Helicobacter pylori in the early 1980s, antibiotic eradication regimens of various sorts have been introduced and tested in clinical practice. Other bacterial infections of the gastrointestinal tract remain a concern, particularly with the increase in mortality in hospitals from Clostridium difficile. Gastroesophageal reflux disease has become a treatable medical condition but Barrett's esophagus and esophageal cancer continue to increase in prevalence. Chemotherapeutic regimens have expanded beyond 5-FU to biologics that antagonize diverse growth factor receptors. The introduction of bio-logics and immune modulators has been transforming in the field of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). In the field of hepatology, liver specialists have witnessed the discovery of the cause of non-A, non-B hepatitis and dramatic progress in antiviral therapy to treat both HCV and HBV, with NAFLD the next disorder on the radar screen. End-stage liver disease is now a treatable disorder for many patients fortunate enough to undergo surgery by a transplant surgeon. Celiac disease, rather than a rare diarrheal disorder, has come to be recognized as an extremely common (1/100) disease with protean manifestations that does not always respond satisfactorily to dietary intervention. Functional disorders of the gastrointestinal tract remain difficult to treat, but with the continued development and introduction of drugs to treat the chronic conditions. Patients with either acute or chronic pancreatitis are now better understood and treated by digestive specialists but improved, non-invasive therapies are sorely needed. In developed countries, obesity is now the major challenge of the 21st century and gastroenterologists are expected to play a major role in the care of these patients.

Gastroenterologists of the future will become much more involved in disease therapy and thus Timothy Cragin Wang Editor-in-Chief Professor of Medicine and Chief of GI (Digestive and Liver Diseases) Columbia University, New York NY, USA ude.aibmuloc@12wct this new journal will keep our readers informed of progress and also help accelerate this trend. We expect that clinical trials in IBD and viral hepatitis will continue to grow, and that newer therapies will be forthcoming to treat disorders of the ‘brain-gut’ axis. Gastrointestinal specialists have continued to become much more involved in the therapy of gastrointestinal cancers (esophageal, stomach, pancreas, liver, colon, etc), whether through endoscopic palliation or therapy (EMR), their involvement in transplant programs, or the actual administration of therapies. Gastroenterologists are natural ‘cancer preventionists’ as well as key clinical partners in the management of advanced disease. In both the IBD and cancer fields, the use of monoclonal antibody-based therapies has, overall, been the most successful paradigm of the last decade. In the genomic era, we expect many newer therapies to be more tailored to an individual patient's genetics, and thus we expect to oversee the publication of pharmacogenomic studies over the next five years. While the use of probiotics is now familiar to many IBD specialists, the dawn of the ‘microbiome’ era is here, and we will undoubtedly see interesting ways to manipulate endogenous gut flora in the coming decade.

For those of you that submit articles to our journal, we will work to ensure rapid turnaround of manuscripts so that the information is current and relevant to clinical practice. These features will allow us to become a well-respected addition to publishing in gastroenterology and hepatology, and further enhance the dissemination of opinion and research.

Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology is the third title in Sage's Therapeutic Advances series, following Cardiovascular and Respiratory disease titles launched last year. All the titles, including this one, will be freely available on Highwire for the first two volumes – until 2010 in our case. We aim to make the journal an attractive option for authors seeking a home for their articles. Articles will be subjected to rigorous peer review, usually within 2–3 weeks; and accepted articles will be published online within 7 weeks of publication.

I welcome you to our new journal and encourage you to submit articles for publication.


Articles from Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology are provided here courtesy of SAGE Publications