Geoffrey Dusheiko - Biography#

Geoff Dusheiko has worked and studied in South Africa, the United States and the United Kingdom. He established an international, independent reputation in the field of viral hepatitis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The indelible imprint of the morbidity of chronic viral hepatitis that he witnessed in South Africa has left him with a determination to see this disease defeated. At the NIH, he worked under the tutelage of Dr Jay Hoofnagle, studying synthesis of neutralising antibodies in patients with chronic hepatitis B. He was closely involved in the landmark studies of the time of the natural history, molecular virology, serology and potential antiviral treatment of chronic hepatitis. He has been the architect of a series of studies elucidating the natural history and epidemiology of hepatitis B and hepatocellular carcinoma in an endemic area. He has been able to document the molecular changes in hepatitis B replication in patients and to demonstrate a changing epidemiology in patients migrating from rural to urban areas. In 1982 he realised the possible antiviral potential of recombinant interferon alpha, devised a treatment strategy, and in a landmark study, documented that a proportion of patients with chronic hepatitis B responded to interferon alpha. These studies were followed by further studies of nucleoside analogues which have stood the test of time. He has directed studies examining the effect of gene methylation on hepatitis B replication, and chromosomal integration sites of hepatitis B virus in HCC cell lines. After the discovery of hepatitis C, he continued his interests in the complex nature of chronic viral hepatitis, to improve sustained response rates with direct acting antiviral therapy. Liver transplantation was previously contra-indicated for patients with hepatitis B but with clinical co-workers, Geoff Dusheiko devised a strategy for preventing hepatitis B recurrence after transplantation using 2'3' dideoxy-thiacytidine, (lamivudine). He continues his research interests at Kings College Hospital, focussing on new curative treatments including RNA interference and capsid inhibitors.

He is an advisor to the WHO, advises several groups, and chairs independent safety monitoring boards for investigational agents for hepatitis B. He hopes to continue research with a public health impact

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