The genetic epidemiology of liver disease

The genetic epidemiology of liver disease

Approximately 16,000 people die from liver disease in UK every year. The goal of this project is to human genetic factors that explain why some people develop severe liver disease and others do not. Specifically, we will perform Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS) to identify gene variants (i.e. DNA sites that vary naturally from one person to another) associated with liver cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma (the most common form of primary liver cancer).

This project is underpinned by data from the UK Biobank study (application #8764). The project is also supported by funding from the Medical Research Foundation.

The ultimate goal is firstly to better understand the biological mechanisms underpinning progression to severe liver disease and liver cancer. Secondly, to develop new risk prediction tools that enable clinicians to focus their resources on the highest risk patients.

For more information about the project contact Dr Hamish Innes (, Researcher at the School of Health and Life Sciences at the Glasgow Caledonian University.

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