The research of Michael R. Charlton, M.D., is focused on viral hepatitis and fatty liver disease. Research activities include developing new approaches for treating patients with advanced liver disease (cirrhosis), with an overall goal of reducing the burden of liver failure and liver cancer secondary to hepatitis C infection. Recent research activities include using new antiviral agents for patients with the most advanced forms of hepatitis C infection to determine if scarring of the liver and complications of hepatitis C infection can be reversed.
Dr. Charlton is also developing new approaches to identify patients at risk of progressive fatty (nutrition-related) liver disease. Dr. Charlton has a particular interest in identifying the dietary triggers for liver injury due to fatty liver disease. He is helping to identify new therapies for reversing inflammation and scarring from fatty liver disease.
- Hepatitis C infection. Dr. Charlton's focus is in developing new therapeutic approaches for patients with advanced liver disease secondary to hepatitis C infection combining newly developed oral antiviral agents.
- Fatty liver disease. Dr. Charlton's focus is in identifying the nutritional triggers for fatty liver disease and in using a small animal model of fatty liver disease, developed in his lab, to develop new approaches to treating and reversing fatty liver disease.
Significance to patient care
Hepatitis C and fatty liver disease are the two most common causes of liver failure leading to liver transplantation in the United States and Western Europe. Dr. Charlton's hope is that advances in understating these diseases can be used to prevent liver failure due to both of these diseases. Bringing together the resources of academic medical centers and industry partners makes this an achievable goal.
- Fellow, Royal College of Physicians, 2009-present
- Councilor and secretary, the International Liver Transplantation Society, 2009-present
- Ad hoc study section member for the National Institutes of Health, 2004-present
- Associate editor, American Journal of Transplantation (current), Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology journal (current), Hepatology journal (2005-2010), Liver Transplantation journal (2003-2005)
- Author; national and international guidelines for the management of fatty liver disease and hepatitis C infection; the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease, the Infectious Disease Society of America and the International Antiviral Society
- Career Achievement Award, the American Society of Transplantations, 2002