RESEARCH PROGRAM

Hepatology

"We have identified proteins that can protect liver tissue during acute injury and are developing forms of these proteins that can be converted into drugs."

DR. MATÍAS ÁVILA ZARAGOZÁ
DIRECTOR. HEPATOLOGY RESEARCH PROGRAM

In the Hepatology Program at Cima we focus preferentially on the study of liver tumors (hepatocarcinoma and cholangiocarcinoma), hepatic steatosis (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease) and acute intermittent porphyria, a rare genetic disease that originates in the liver.

One of the priority lines of our team is the study of diseases that affect liver metabolism and contribute to the development of liver tumors.

Our program is made up of a multidisciplinary research team of expert biologists, biochemists, physicians, engineers, bioinformaticians, etc. We have one of the most experienced groups worldwide in basic and translational hepatology.

This experience has been forged for more than 35 years in the Department of Internal Medicine of the Clínica Universidad de Navarra, and in the last two decades, in what has subsequently become the Gene Therapy and Hepatology Area of Cima. This recognition is the result of the work of Prof. Jesús Prieto and the researchers who have been part of both departments.

 

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Objectives of the Hepatology Research Program


Hepatoprotective strategies

To reduce mortality in patients with acute liver failure, and to improve prognosis in total or partial liver resection and liver transplantation.


Molecular markers

To identify molecular markers that help to understand the alterations that give rise to liver diseases.


Preventing progression

We continue to investigate treatments that hinder or prevent the development of liver fibrosis, regardless of the cause.

REFERENCE CENTER

Hepatology Program

Our research is based on multidisciplinary work in which researchers from other Cima programs, such as Molecular Therapies, Oncology or Cardiovascular Diseases of the Cima Universidad de Navarra, also participate.

We have an extensive international track record in basic and translational hepatology research.

Our research groups

Our program is organized in two groups focused on the study of liver diseases

Liver damage and carcinogenesis

To develop hepatoprotective strategies aimed at recovering liver function and regenerative capacity.

Acute porphyrias

New therapies and design of methods for early detection of the onset of the disease before the first symptoms appear.

FROM THE LABORATORY TO THE PATIENT

Cutting-edge translational research

Aware of the impact they have on the population and, consequently, on health care costs, the Hepatology Program focuses on understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of the hepatic response to acute and chronic injury.


Hepatic lesions

Study of the causes that lead to liver damage and its behavior, which will make it possible to enhance the defense mechanisms and find new treatments.


Liver cirrhosis

When cirrhosis appears, it is irreversible and, if decompensated, the only definitive solution is liver transplantation. Our research is looking for mechanisms to prevent its onset or to slow its progression.


Liver cancer

We do research not only in immunotherapy, but also in the development and knowledge of targeted treatments that aim to identify molecular alterations in liver cells.

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Meet the research team

Scientific activity of the
Hepatology Research Program