Patrizia Farci, M.D.
Hepatic Pathogenesis Section
Building 50, Room 6529
50 South Drive
Bethesda, MD 20892
The Hepatic Pathogenesis Section (HPS) was established in 2010 to conduct translational research in the field of liver diseases, particularly in the study of pathogenesis of acute and chronic viral hepatitis, with the main goal of merging clinical medicine with basic research. Acute and chronic inflammatory liver diseases, especially viral hepatitis, are a major cause of morbidity and mortality both in the United States and in the rest of the world. A significant proportion of patients die of long-term sequelae of chronic liver disease, primarily cirrhosis and liver cancer.
Although there has been considerable progress in the control and treatment of acute and chronic viral hepatitis, future advances will depend on a more thorough knowledge of the mechanisms of pathogenesis. HPS has developed a comprehensive research program to study the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis of acute liver failure and acute and chronic hepatitis especially of viral etiology, as well as the long-term sequelae of chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. Current research efforts also include the search for new hepatitis agents that may be implicated in the etiology of other forms of acute and chronic inflammatory liver diseases. New knowledge gained from these studies will pave the way toward the development of better means of preventing, diagnosing, and treating these illnesses.
Dr. Farci earned her M.D. at the University of Cagliari Medical School, Italy, and then became a board-certified specialist in infectious diseases and gastroenterology at the same university. She was trained at the department of gastroenterology of the Molinette Hospital in Torino under Dr. Mario Rizzetto and at the department of medicine of the Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine in London under Professor Sheila Sherlock. In 1989, she joined the laboratory of Dr. Robert H. Purcell in the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases (LID) as a visiting scientist. In 1992, she became associate professor of medicine and, in 2000, full professor of medicine and director of the liver unit and of the postgraduate school of gastroenterology at the University of Cagliari. In 2007, she returned to LID, where in 2010 she became chief of the Hepatic Pathogenesis Section.
Chen Z, Diaz G, Pollicino T, Zhao H, Engle RE, Schuck P, Shen CH, Zamboni F, Long Z, Kabat J, De Battista D, Bock KW, Moore IN, Wollenberg K, Soto C, Govindarajan S, Kwong PD, Kleiner DE, Purcell RH, Farci P. Role of humoral immunity against hepatitis B virus core antigen in the pathogenesis of acute liver failure. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018;115(48):E11369-E11378.
Sekhar V, Pollicino T, Diaz G, Engle RE, Alayli F, Melis M, Kabat J, Tice A, Pomerenke A, Altan-Bonnet N, Zamboni F, Lusso P, Emerson SU, Farci P. Infection with hepatitis C virus depends on TACSTD2, a regulator of claudin-1 and occludin highly downregulated in hepatocellular carcinoma. PLoS Pathog. 2018;14(3):e1006916.
Diaz G, Engle RE, Tice A, Melis M, Montenegro S, Rodriguez-Canales J, Hanson J, Emmert-Buck MR, Bock KW, Moore IN, Zamboni F, Govindarajan S, Kleiner DE, Farci P. Molecular Signature and Mechanisms of Hepatitis D Virus-Associated Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Mol Cancer Res. 2018;16(9):1406-1419.
Farci P, Wollenberg K, Diaz G, Engle RE, Lai ME, Klenerman P, Purcell RH, Pybus OG, Alter HJ. Profibrogenic chemokines and viral evolution predict rapid progression of hepatitis C to cirrhosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012;109(36):14562-7.
Farci P, Diaz G, Chen Z, Govindarajan S, Tice A, Agulto L, Pittaluga S, Boon D, Yu C, Engle RE, Haas M, Simon R, Purcell RH, Zamboni F. B cell gene signature with massive intrahepatic production of antibodies to hepatitis B core antigen in hepatitis B virus-associated acute liver failure. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2010;107(19):8766-71.
Related Scientific Focus Areas
Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
This page was last updated on August 13th, 2019