Dr. D. Montgomery Bissell is Professor of Medicine and Director Emeritus of the UCSF Liver Center, an NIH-funded consortium of 40 independently funded researchers who study the liver and its diseases. Bissell has a career-long interest in liver disease, dating to when he conducted a project on hepatocellular carcinoma in East Africa as a Harvard medical student. He then turned his attention to defining the cellular responses and molecular regulation of the scarring process known as fibrosis and cirrhosis. The latter is the most important consequence of many chronic liver diseases including inborn errors of metabolism, viral hepatitis, autoimmune states, alcohol abuse and others. It also is the setting for most cases of liver cancer.
Since 1981, Bissell has led the Rice-Liver Center Laboratory at San Francisco General Hospital, known internationally for basic research on fibrosis and defining new therapies to block fibrosis progression in patients. He is a member of several professional organizations including the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians and has served on numerous review panels for NIH, the Veterans Administration and other groups.
Awards & Honors
Distinguished Achievement Award, American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, 2004
MERIT award, NIDDK/NIH, 1998-2004
Advisory Council, NIDDK/NIH, 1997-2001
President, American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, 1994-1995
Member, American Society for Clinical Investigation, 1977---
My laboratory investigates tissue remodeling in liver injury. We have been focusing recently on oval cells, which are liver progenitor cells and proliferate in several forms of liver injury. Oval cells, can be isolated and, with expansion in culture, hold promise for cell-based therapy of a variety of liver diseases. We have recently defined a member of the TNF-alpha family of cytokines that appears to be a specific growth factor for a subset of oval cells. We are interested also in mechanisms of the fibrotic response to biliary injury. We have found that TGFβ and the integrin αvβ6 have key roles.
Bissell DM, Lai JC, Meister RK, Blanc PD. Role of delta-aminolevulinic acid in the symptoms of acute porphyria. Am J Med. 2015 Mar; 128(3):313-7. View in PubMed
Bissell DM. Therapy for hepatic fibrosis: revisiting the preclinical models. Clin Res Hepatol Gastroenterol. 2011 Sep; 35(8-9):521-5. View in PubMed
Bissell DM. Of mentors, mentoring, and extracellular matrix. Hepatology. 2009 Nov; 50(5):1330-8. View in PubMed
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