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Liver Injury & Cancer

UNDERSTANDING DISEASE

Liver diseases are caused by chronic inflammatory processes. They are driven by many factors including viruses, autoimmune processes, genetic diseases and toxins such as alcohol.

Our work is devoted to understanding pathways at the cellular and molecular levels that drive liver injury and cancer. These pathways may then be identified as targets to modulate these processes or be used for diagnosis and staging of liver disease and cancer.

We initially used human liver samples to screen for molecules that we up regulated. Since then we have taken some of these molecules and manipulated them in experimental models. This has allowed us to test whether these molecules actually play a role in causing liver injury.

FINDING A CURE

According to The Australian Liver Association, liver disease now affects over six million Australians and has an annual cost burden of
$50.7 billion.

Liver disease is responsible for one quarter of all – organ transplants and if left untreated, results in liver cancer – our fastest growing form of cancer in Australia.

The increasing prevalence of all forms of liver disease, but in particular fatty liver disease with concurrent diabetes, is a huge burden. Our research stems from test tubes, to animal models, human models and clinical trials.

LABORATORIES

 

Professor Geoff McCaughan

Phone: +61 2 9565 6125
Email: g.mccaughan@centenary.org.au
Head of Liver Injury and Cancer Program

Upon completion of his postdoctoral training at the University of Oxford in 1986 as a CJ Martin Fellow, Geoff returned to Sydney where he developed the basic research program for the AW Morrow Gastroenterology and Liver Centre at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital of which he is now the Director. He is Head of the Liver Injury & Cancer Program at the Centenary Institute, which covers Molecular Hepatology; Liver Cell Biology and; Alcoholic Liver Disease.

Geoff’s current research interests include the immunopathogenesis of human chronic liver disease, liver autoimmunity, liver transplant tolerance and molecular analysis of hepatitis C virus. His clinical research interests include treatment of hepatitis B and C, management of hepatocellular cancer and long term outcomes of liver transplantation.

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