The University of Southern California Research Center for Liver Diseases, funded since 1995, has the goal of fostering and facilitating interdisciplinary research in liver and digestive disease. The Center has 41 members and 22 affiliated members. The Biomedical Research Base consists of four major Themes supported by 58 peer-reviewed grants totaling $10.1 million in annual direct costs. These Themes include: a) viral hepatitis, hepatocellular and colon cancer: b) liver injury: c) cell biology, signal transduction and transport: d) regulatory biology: liver metabolism, gene expression, and liver/intestinal growth and development. Four core facilities support this Research Base: 1) Administrative Core which oversees the operations and budget of the Center including the Cores, P/F program and enrichment program, 2) Cell Culture Core, which provides isolated and primary cultured rat, mouse and human hepatocytes and various cell lines;3) Cell and Tissue Imaging Core, which consists of two subcores: Microscopy Subcore, which provides confocal and fluorescence microscopy using various platforms, and Histology Subcore, which provides liver tissue slide preparation, routine and special staining, and interpretation. 3) Analytical, Metabolic, Instrumentation Core, which consists of a base Core and two subcores;the base core provides oversight of the subcores and access to a wide range of equipment shared by Center members and specialized HPLC analyses;the Small Molecule Subcore (metabolic component) provides quantitation of analytes using mass spectrometry, and the Proteomic Subcore uses state-of-the-art mass spectrometry approaches for protein identification. The Center supports Pilot Feasibility projects in diverse areas related to the themes of the Research Base. Current projects include studies of: a) farnesoid X receptor, bile acids and liver regeneration;b) the role of Myc-max and Mnt-max in regulation of p53 and cyclin D1 by toxic bile acid;c) salvage of short bowel syndrome by tissue engineered intestine;d) development of a model for engraftment of human embryonic stem cell-derived hepatocytes to regenerate liver;and e) elucidation of the role of AP-1 and DNA damage repair in HCV-induced hepatocelluar carcinoma.

Public Health Relevance

Liver diseases are a major cause of death and health-related problems. The USC Research Center for Liver Diseases focuses on basic and translational research to unravel the mechanisms and potential prevention and treatment of the most prevalent liver diseases, namely acute and chronic viral hepatitis, medication and alcohol induced liver disease, fatty liver disease, cirrhosis, and liver cancer.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDK1-GRB-8 (M1))
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Podskalny, Judith M,
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University of Southern California
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
Los Angeles
United States
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He, Lina; Gubbins, James; Peng, Zhechu et al. (2016) Activation of hepatic stellate cell in Pten null liver injury model. Fibrogenesis Tissue Repair 9:8
Zhu, Jiaming; Khemichian, Saro; Nghiem, Dat et al. (2016) Comparison of Demographic and Clinical Characteristics of Hispanic and Asian Chronic Hepatitis B Patients in Southern California. J Clin Gastroenterol 50:602-7
Yang, Heping; Liu, Ting; Wang, Jiaohong et al. (2016) Deregulated methionine adenosyltransferase α1, c-Myc, and Maf proteins together promote cholangiocarcinoma growth in mice and humans(‡). Hepatology 64:439-55
Flodby, Per; Kim, Yong Ho; Beard, LaMonta L et al. (2016) Knockout Mice Reveal a Major Role for Alveolar Epithelial Type I Cells in Alveolar Fluid Clearance. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 55:395-406
Dara, Lily; Liu, Zhang-Xu; Kaplowitz, Neil (2016) A murder mystery in the liver: who done it and how? J Clin Invest 126:4068-4071
Chen, Jian; Yao, Zhi-Xing; Chen, Jiun-Sheng et al. (2016) TGF-β/β2-spectrin/CTCF-regulated tumor suppression in human stem cell disorder Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome. J Clin Invest 126:527-42
Niu, Chao; Chauhan, Uday; Gargus, Matthew et al. (2016) Generation and Characterization of an Immortalized Human Esophageal Myofibroblast Line. PLoS One 11:e0153185
Dara, Lily; Kaplowitz, Neil (2016) The many faces of RIPK3: What about NASH? Hepatology 64:1411-1413
Li, Yuchang; Lua, Ingrid; French, Samuel W et al. (2016) Role of TGF-β signaling in differentiation of mesothelial cells to vitamin A-poor hepatic stellate cells in liver fibrosis. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 310:G262-72
Dara, Lily; Liu, Zhang-Xu; Kaplowitz, Neil (2016) Questions and controversies: the role of necroptosis in liver disease. Cell Death Discov 2:16089

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