U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Liver Diseases Virology Section

T. Jake Liang, M.D., Chief

​Research Images

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Schematic of HBV replication and drug targetsThe virus enters the hepatocyte using the sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide as a receptor. cccDNA is generated by repairing the partially double stranded genome in the nucleus, whereupon viral transcription occurs. Encapsidation of the pregenomic RNA occurs in the cytoplasm via a complex interaction of viral and host proteins. Reverse transcription leading to negative and then positive strand synthesis occurs within the viral nucleocapsid. Viral assembly takes place in the ER. “Mature” nucleocapsids undergo assembly and coating with envelope proteins followed by budding and virion secretion into the blood. Potential targets for drug development are highlighted.Schematic of HBV replication and drug targetsEnlarge
3-D structure of HCVThe three-dimensional structure of HCV is visualized and simulated by using electron cryomicroscopy of recombinant HCV-like viral particles.3-D structure of HCVEnlarge
iPSC-derived human hepatocytesHuman hepatocytes, generated from induced pluripotent stem cells derived from a patient, produce and exhibit hepatocyte-specific proteins (albumin) and functions (lipid and glycogen storage, organic anion transport). This regenerative medicine technology can be a valuable strategy for cell-based therapy of liver diseases.iPSC-derived human hepatocytesEnlarge
Induction of steatosis by HCVHCV infection of human hepatocyte-derived cells induces a lipogenic program that results in massive accumulation of lipid droplets (green and yellow structures). This is known as steatosis and is essential for HCV propagation.Induction of steatosis by HCVEnlarge
Hepatitis C Electromicrograph 1Hepatitis C Electromicrograph 1Enlarge
Hepatitis C Electromicrograph 2Hepatitis C Electromicrograph 2Enlarge
Hepatitis C Viral LifecycleHepatitis C Viral LifecycleEnlarge