Dr. Bernd Schnabl and Coworkers Find Another Way Alcohol Damages the Liver

Natural gut antibiotics diminished by alcohol leave mice more prone to bacterial growth in the liver, exacerbating alcohol-induced liver disease —

Alcohol itself can directly damage liver cells. Now researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report evidence that alcohol is also harmful to the liver for a second reason — it allows gut bacteria to migrate to the liver, promoting alcohol-induced liver disease. The study, conducted in mice and in laboratory samples, is published February 10 in Cell Host & Microbe.

“Alcohol appears to impair the body’s ability to keep microbes in check,” said senior author Bernd Schnabl, MD, associate professor of gastroenterology at UC San Diego School of Medicine. … Read the Full Story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


BBernd Schnabl, MDernd Schnabl, MD, is Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at UC San Diego School of Medicine.

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology faculty members Samuel B. Ho, MD, Professor of Medicine; and David A. Brenner, MD, Vice Chancellor, Health Sciences, Dean of UC San Diego School of Medicine and Professor of Medicine are coauthors of the study report.

Read the Article Abstract

Dr. Schnabl’s Laboratory Website

Doctorate Program Will Study Substance Abuse and Its Consequences

Collaboration between UC San Diego and SDSU among first in nation —

A new Joint Doctoral Program (JDP) in Interdisciplinary Research on Substance Use has been launched by the Division of Global Public Health in the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and San Diego State University’s School of Social Work. The program will emphasize research devoted to studying the use and misuse of alcohol and drugs – and related social and health consequences. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Steffanie Strathdee

Dr. Strathdee.

Co-directors of the program are Steffanie Strathdee, PhD, and Maria Luisa Zúñiga, PhD.

Dr. Strathdee is Associate Dean of Global Health Sciences, head of the UC San Diego Global Health Initiative and Harold Simon Professor and Chief of the Division of Global Public Health at UC San Diego.

Dr. Zúñiga is associate professor and behavioral epidemiologist in the Division of Global Public Health and associate professor in the San Diego State University School of Social Work.

Read the joint doctoral program catalog description

Facebook Boosts Voter Turnout

In 61-million-person experiment, researchers show online social networks influence political participation, with close relationships mattering most

About one third of a million more people showed up at the ballot box in the United States in 2010 because of a single Facebook message on Election Day, estimates a new study led by the University of California, San Diego. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. James FowlerLead author of the study report is Dr. James H. Fowler, professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics and professor of political science in the Division of Social Sciences.

Dr. Fowler’s research is concerned with social networks, behavioral science, evolution, politics, genetics and big data. In recent medicine-related studies, he has examined the dynamics of alcohol consumption, smoking and obesity in large social networks.

Modest Alcohol Use Lowers Risk and Severity of Some Liver Disease

People with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NALFD) who consume alcohol in modest amounts – no more than one or two servings per day – are half as likely to develop hepatitis as non-drinkers with the same condition, reports a national team of scientists led by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


UC San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest
Senior author Jeffrey B. Schwimmer, MD, is associate professor of clinical pediatrics at UC San Diego and a pediatric gastroenterologist at Rady Children’s Hospital. Research collaborator and first author Winston Dunn, MD, now assistant professor in the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Motility at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, completed a gastroenterology fellowship at UC San Diego in 2009.

The article citation:
Modest alcohol consumption is associated with decreased prevalence of steatohepatitis in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) by Winston Dunn, Arun J. Sanyal, Elizabeth M. Brunt, Aynur Unalp-Arida, Michael Donohue, Arthur J. McCullough, Jeffrey B. Schwimmer, for the Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis Clinical Research Network (NASH CRN) Journal of Hepatology (Vol.null)

Read the abstract online

In the Media: Dr. Richard Clark

Dr. Richard Clark is one of the three experts interviewed in the KPBS These Days segment, “The Science of Substance Abuse.”

Richard F. Clark, M.D., Professor of Clinical Medicine, directs the Division of Medical Toxicology in Emergency Medicine. He is medical director of the San Diego Division of the California Poison Control System at UCSD Medical Center.