Ladies, Gentlemen, dear Colleagues and Friends,
“The main goal of the Hungarian Society of Cardiology is to help those – within or outside the Society– who wish to participate in the struggle against cardiovascular diseases and in the development of Hungarian cardiology” says the creed of the Society.. Today I have the great pleasure to introduce and inaugurate as our new honorary member someone who is not simply awarded for his scientific work, for his efforts to struggle against cardiovascular diseases but also for his objective to “forster greater collaboration across European countries”. As Michel Komajda, the President of the European Society of Cardiology started his presidency with this aim in his mind:
“In addition to more EU funding for cardiovascular research, my idea is to remember our European roots and foster greater collaborations across the continent,” he says. “I want to encourage joint projects across European countries, regardless of their economic wealth. Rich countries can do so much to help poorer countries in terms of designing educational programmes and tools, and facilitating research networks.”
Komajda, who has spent the majority of his career at the Pitié Salpetričre Hospital in Paris, where he has risen through the ranks from lecturer to head of the Cardiovascular and Surgical Departments, became ESC President in 2010. In his term of office, Komajda endeavours to strengthen links between the ESC Board and National Societies. “With such a big structure to the ESC, which is composed of 51 National Societies, 19 Working Groups, five Associations and five Councils, there is a danger the organisation could become a bit anonymous," he says. "I would like to introduce a personal touch, providing the opportunity for more interaction between the leadership and different bodies."
He occupied the positions of treasurer, general secretary and vice president of the French Society of Cardiology and was president of the society between 2002 and 2004.
At present he is also Professor of Cardiology in the Department of Cardiology at Université Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris.
Komajda's research interests have focussed on the genetics of dilated and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, with a view to offering genetic analysis for families with the condition. The diagnosis and treatment of heart failure has been another prominent theme in his career. As one of the principal investigators on the EUROGENE Heart Failure Project, he has facilitated a European network of nine different centres from seven countries, which have enrolled 3000 patients with a view to identifying the genes involved in heart failure. The project should eventually allow identification of patients requiring intensive follow-up and care.
During his career, he participated at many editorial boards such as Heart, International Journal of Cardiology, European Heart Journal, European Journal of Heart Failure.
Michel Komajda is the author of 300 peer-reviewed papers, mostly in heart failure, and has been a member of several Steering and Executive Committees of international trials on heart failure and cardiovascular diseases (CARMEN, COMET, I-PRESERVE, HEAAL, RECORD, CORONA, SHIFT).
This is Ladies and Gentlemen, dear Colleagues and Friends, a summary in figure of the scientific and diplomatic activities of Michel Komajda. I am honoured and glad to present him today the Pro Merito Award of the Hungarian Society of Cardiology and inaugurate him as our Honorary Member. Dear Michel, I would like to ask you to take over this medal ... and to hold your lecture.