We are proud to announce that the first five years of activity of the Roche Organ Transplantation Research Foundation (ROTRF) have been completed. At the beginning of the latest application cycle (Cycle XI) in October 2003, the second 5 years have commenced. In the first five years of its existence, covering 10 application cycles, the Foundation has awarded 105 grants to scientists around the world; the total amount of funding awarded for grants has been over 20 million Swiss Francs (CHF).

This funding has helped scientists working in the area of solid organ transplantation. The excellent work carried out by the researchers has been demonstrated by the high-quality papers published in peer-reviewed journals and the presentations of the scientists at international meetings.

The activities of the ROTRF were highlighted at the Congress of the European Society for Organ Transplantation (ESOT) in Venice in September 2003. During the congress the Foundation organised a symposium where five young investigators supported by ROTRF grants were given the opportunity to present the results achieved during their ROTRF-funded research. The talks presented were of outstanding scientific quality. We are looking forward to repeat this experience in September 2004 when, during the International Congress of the Transplantation Society in Vienna, the ROTRF will organise a series of State-of-the-Art Lectures.

All the ROTRF activities could never have taken place without the constant support of various people. We would like to thank F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd for its uninterrupted support to the Foundation. We would also like to thank all the scientists and clinicians involved: the members of the Board of Trustees; the Scientific Advisory Committee; and, most of all, the applicants.

On the behalf of the Board of Trustees

Philip Halloran