Genomic approach to liver disease

at the University of Toronto

Studies of human liver diseases
using cDNA microarray technology

Liver diseases such as Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C are the most common causes for cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The mechanism by which HBV and HCV viruses cause liver damage and the specific genes that are involved during this pathological process is largely unknown.

We are interested in the gene transcript changes in each specific liver disease and during treatment. To enable this, we have formed collaborations with leading hepatologists at the University of Toronto. We have developed successfully a method to stabilize and extract total cellular RNA from tiny biopsy samples. We have created a large dataset of liver transcription profiles from a wide range of liver diseases and have developed comprehensive analysis software for microarray data analysis. The research will focus on the HBV and HCV-specific genes as well as to identify transcription profiles that predict clinical outcomes.

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