John C. Bucuvalas, MD
Professor; Director of the Integrated Solid Organ Transplant Center 
Department of Pediatrics; Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition
Visit the Bucuvalas Research Lab

Description of Research

Dr. Bucuvalas studies outcomes of children with liver disease before and after liver transplantation. He is a member of the steering committee of the Pediatric Acute Liver Failure Study Group (PALFSG) funded by NIDDK. He identified an immune activation profile that predicted survival without liver transplantation and also an immune activation profile that predicted markedly increased risk for death in a series of pediatric patients with acute liver failure. The motivation to withdraw pediatric liver transplant recipients from immunosuppression is a logical outgrowth of the recent studies reporting the long-term mortality and morbidity in children who face heavy cumulative burden of life-long immunosuppression. Dr. Bucuvalas is working with Dr. Feng from UCSF to identify pediatric liver transplant recipients who can safely and durably withdraw from immunosuppression. In parallel studies, he is working with Dr. Hancock from the Univ Penn to determine to determine if epigenetic profiles predict the function of T regulatory cells and contributes to the mechanisms of tolerance. It is increasingly obvious that pediatric liver transplant recipients can be considered to have a chronic condition. Dr. Bucuvalas is working with Dr. Shemesh to develop the necessary knowledge base from which to study nonadherence. Their results will enable practitioners to routinely evaluate nonadherence using tools developed from these studies.


Dr. Bucuvalas collaborates with Dr. Campbell in studies investigating genetic predictors of renal disease following pediatric liver transplantation. Projection of Core use: Biostatistical service.