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Molecular and Cellular Biology

Houston, Texas

Image 1: Ovulated mouse cumulus cell oocyte complex immunostained for matrix proteins hyaluronan and versican. By JoAnne Richards, Ph.D.; Image 2: By Yi LI, Ph.D.; Image 3: Mouse oocyte at meiosis I immunostained  for tubulin (red) phosphop38MAPK (green) and DNA (blue). By JoAnne Richards,  Ph.D.;  Image 4: Expanded cumulus cell ooctye ocmplex  immunostained for hyaluronan (red), TSG6 (green) and DAN (blue). By JoAnne  Richards, Ph.D.;  Image 5: Epithelial cells taken from a mouse  mammary gland were cultured in a dish and transduced with a retrovirus  expressing two genes. The green staining shows green fluorescent protein and the red  staining shows progesterone receptor expression. The nucleus of each cell is  stained blue. Photomicrograph taken at 200X magnification.  By Sandra L. Grimm,  Ph.D.; Image 6: Ovarian vasculature (red) is excluded from the granulosa cells (blue) within growing follicles (round structures); Image 7:  Ovulated mouse cumulus cell oocyte  complex immunostained for matrix proteins hyaluronan and versican. By JoAnne Richards, Ph.D.
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
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Karl-Dimiter Bissig, M.D., Ph.D.

Karl-Dimiter Bissg, M.D., Ph.D. photoAssistant Professor
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology


M.D., Ph.D.: University of Bern, Switzerland
Postdoctoral training: The Salk Institute, La Jolla

Research Interest

Cell Based Therapy for Liver Disease
Regenerative medicine has been revolutionized by the induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell technology and a lot of effort is spent in establishing autologous cell therapies. One of the major hurdles of this seemingly straightforward approach is the lack of suitable small animal models to validate the true nature of stem cell derived hepatocytes. Our laboratory has the opportunity to validate these hepatocytes and explore cell-based therapy in recently developed xenotransplantation model (Bissig et al. PNAS 2007). We are further developing novel genomic approaches to program stem cells into hepatocytes or even normal skin cells into hepatocytes (transdifferentiation).

Recent advancements led to a human liver chimerism of 95% and propagation of hepatitis B and C virus in these humanized mice (Bissig et al. Journal of Clinical Investigation 2010). One of the ongoing projects in our lab is the evaluation of a new class of antiviral drugs against viral hepatitis. This is a multicenter, NIH sponsored collaborative effort.

Contact Information

Baylor College of Medicine
One Baylor Plaza, N1010.07
Houston, TX 77030

Phone: 713-798-1256

Selected Publications

  1. Ruiz S, Panopoulos A, Herrerías A, Bissig K-D, Berggren TW, Lutz M, Verma IM, Izpisua-Belmonte JC. (2011) High Proliferation Rate Is Required for Cell Reprogramming and Maintenance of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Identity Curr Biol. 2011 Jan 11;21(1):45-52. PMID:21603572
  2. Bissig K-D, Wieland SF, Tran P, Isogawa M, Le TT, Chisari VF, Verma IM. (2011) Hepatitis B and C virus infection in the fah-/-/rag-2-/-/il-2rg-/- chimeric mouse model, J Clin Invest. 2010 Mar 1;120(3):924-30. PMID:21167714
  3. Bissig K-D, Le TT, Woods NB, Verma IM. (2007) Repopulation of adult and neonatal mice with human hepatocytes: a chimeric animal model, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007 Dec 18;104(51):20507-11. PMID: 20179355

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