Anna Mae Diehl, MD

Professor of Medicine
Florence McAlister Professor of Medicine, in the School of Medicine
Professor in Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
Member of the Duke Cancer Institute
Affiliate of the Regeneration Next Initiative
Campus mail Duke Box 3256, 905 S. Lasalle Street, GSRB 1, Durham, NC 27710
Phone (919) 684-2366
Email address

Our lab has a long standing interest in liver injury and repair. To learn more about the mechanisms that regulate this process, we study cultured cells, animal models of acute and chronic liver damage and samples from patients with various types of liver disease. Our group also conducts clinical trials in patients with chronic liver disease. We are particularly interested in fatty liver diseases, such as alcoholic fatty liver disease and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

Research by our group has advanced understanding in two main areas: 1) immune system regulation of liver injury and regeneration and 2)the role of fetal morphogens, such as the hedgehog pathway, in regulating fibrotic responses to liver damage. Our basic research programs have been enjoyed continuous NIH support since 1989. We welcome students, post-doctoral fellows and visiting scientists who have interests in this research area to contact us about training opportunities and potential collaborations.

Since 2001 we have also been an active participant in the NIDDK-funded Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis Clinical Research Network (NASH CRN), a national consortium comprised of 8 university medical centers selected to generate a national registry for patients with NAFLD and to conduct multicenter treatment trials for this disorder. We are actively recruiting patients for this program, as well as a number of other industry-supported NAFLD studies.

In Their Words

Education and Training

  • Fellow in Gastroenterology, Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, 1981 - 1984
  • Medical Resident, Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, 1978 - 1981
  • M.D., Georgetown University, 1978


Newton, Kimberly P., Haruna S. Feldman, Christina D. Chambers, Laura Wilson, Cynthia Behling, Jeanne M. Clark, Jean P. Molleston, et al. “Low and High Birth Weights Are Risk Factors for Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in Children..” J Pediatr 187 (August 2017): 141-146.e1.

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Kim, Jieun, Jeongeun Hyun, Sihyung Wang, Chanbin Lee, Jae-Wook Lee, Eun-Yi Moon, Heejae Cha, Anna Mae Diehl, and Youngmi Jung. “Thymosin beta-4 regulates activation of hepatic stellate cells via hedgehog signaling..” Sci Rep 7, no. 1 (June 19, 2017).

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Patel, Yuval A., Ricardo Henao, Cynthia A. Moylan, Cynthia D. Guy, Dawn L. Piercy, Anna Mae Diehl, and Manal F. Abdelmalek. “Reply to Kim et al..” Am J Gastroenterol 112, no. 5 (May 2017): 807–8.

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Xie, Guanhua, Marzena Swiderska-Syn, Mark L. Jewell, Mariana Verdelho Machado, Gregory A. Michelotti, Richard T. Premont, and Anna Mae Diehl. “Loss of pericyte smoothened activity in mice with genetic deficiency of leptin..” Bmc Cell Biology 18, no. 1 (April 20, 2017).

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Li, Jia, Sumedha Roy, Young-Mi Kim, Shibo Li, Baojun Zhang, Cassandra Love, Anupama Reddy, et al. “Id2 Collaborates with Id3 To Suppress Invariant NKT and Innate-like Tumors..” J Immunol 198, no. 8 (April 15, 2017): 3136–48.

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Schadde, Erik, Christopher Tsatsaris, Marzena Swiderska-Syn, Stefan Breitenstein, Martin Urner, Roman Schimmer, Christa Booy, et al. “Hypoxia of the growing liver accelerates regeneration..” Surgery 161, no. 3 (March 2017): 666–79.

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Ajmera, Veeral, Emily R. Perito, Nathan M. Bass, Norah A. Terrault, Katherine P. Yates, Ryan Gill, Rohit Loomba, Anna Mae Diehl, Bradley E. Aouizerat, and Bradley E. NASH Clinical Research Network. “Novel plasma biomarkers associated with liver disease severity in adults with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease..” Hepatology 65, no. 1 (January 2017): 65–77.

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