Alcoholic liver and pancreatic diseases (ALPD) and cirrhosis constitute leading life-style diseases caused by alcohol abuse around the globe. The Southern California Research Center for ALPD and Cirrhosis unifies 58 investigators from seven academic institutions in Southern California to pursue a common mission of being a leader in research, training, and outreach for the diseases. The center, since its inception in 1999, has devoted its efforts for development and use of clinically relevant animal models to gain novel insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying ALPD and cirrhosis. These efforts culminated to groundbreaking discoveries on molecular mechanisms and therapeutic targets of the diseases. The center?s interactive environment and infrastructure have facilitated in the past 5 years, a 187% increase in research base to $16.3M/year; 13 new U01/P01 programs; 219 publications; generation of 12 NIH-funded early-stage investigators; 8 of 15 postdocs transitioned to faculty positions pursuing research at the center; training 179 graduate and 38 undergraduate students; and organizing 2 community seminars and 4 international symposia. As a unique national resource, the center has supported 34 non-center member investigators; 13 of whom via provision of animal model services of the Animal Core; and 27 of whom via the Core?s Tissue Sharing Program, facilitating 13 publications and 15 grant acquisitions and applications by these investigators. The center will continue to strive as a unique scientific center of excellence in ALPD and cirrhosis by: 1) maximizing our interactive and synergistic environment for a pursuit for the center?s main research theme: identification of therapeutic targets for advanced ALPD and cirrhosis; 2) serving as a national and international resource in our fields of research via provision of unique models, technology and expertise, as well as collaborations with outside investigators including NIAAA-funded scientists; 3) providing comprehensive education and research training at the multi-levels ranging from undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral trainees, to junior scientists and faculty in order to foster and support future generations of independent scientists in the ALPD and cirrhosis field; and 4) continuing outreach efforts to disseminate the center?s new findings to lay public, healthcare workers, and scientists in our home and global communities.
OVERALL - NARRATIVE ALPD and cirrhosis are the major medical consequences of alcohol abuse and prevalent life- style diseases around the world. Our center's consorted efforts for research, training, and dissemination, and the outcome from these activities help advance the understanding of the diseases and develop novel preventive and therapeutic approaches.
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