(During my operation, a small amount of liver was removed for research purposes. Since my liver now outshines me in long-term import, it feels it should speak for itself.)
Molecular biology and genomics study how our bodies work, at the deepest nuts and bolts level. You can take a look at normal and diseased tissue operations, and then design treatments to enhance normal operation, or to inhibit disease processes.
I've started working with folks at UCSF regarding cholesterol treatment, under the direction of Dr Umesh Masharani, my primary Dr Steven Fugaro and Linda White. Treatment consists of taking a high dose of Niacin (vitamin B-3) daily, which has succeeded in lower cholesterol levels, while increasing the proportion of HDL, the "good cholesterol."
Dr John Kane at UCSF has done extensive work on genomics relating to heart disease, heard about Craig's forthcoming surgery, and approached me about sacrificing a little tissue for testing with "gene chips". They can be used to see what genes are being expressed in low cholesterol production. The intent is better understanding, with the posibility of improved treatment and drug design. I've been assured that the proceeds of intellectual property will be used to build the new "Newmark" wing of UCSF.
(By the way, Craig isn't nearly as funny as he thinks.)
Conventional gene expression tests often requires searching a much larger genomic space than necessary, so Craig's talking to a friend which builds gene chips looking at RNA splicing, since it's actually the splices which do the actual work. I hope to talk Craig into funding that.
Finally, I'd like to thank the surgical stuff, particularly Dr Kim Kirkwood, for fast and painless work, and for staff making only one reference to fava beans.
note: Gawker Media has invited any liver-related humor via this craigslist ad.