Sen. Marshall Announces funding for University of Kansas Medical Center
(Washington, DC, February 19, 2021) – Today, U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. announced the University of Kansas Medical Center received more than $338,000 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to examine liver recovery following an overdose of Acetaminophen, a common over-the-counter drug.
“Acute liver failure is caused by one of the most common over-the-counter drugs, and could potentially affect anyone if not taken as directed.” said Senator Marshall. “It’s alarming that something as common as acetaminophen can be misused or that its active ingredients be underestimated. As a physician and a proud alumni of the University of Kansas School of Medicine, I am very hopeful that this research will lead to other life-saving antidotes and reduce the need for liver transplants.”
Over the next four years, researchers at the University of Kansas Medical Center will study how other therapeutics can improve liver recovery following an Acetaminophen overdose. Acetaminophen is a common over-the-counter medication used to treat minor aches and pains, and reduce fever. It is generally safe when taken as directed. However, overdosing on this drug is the leading cause of acute liver injury and the most common cause of acute liver failure nationwide. When overdose symptoms start, patients must seek emergency or intensive care.
The current antidote was last developed in the 1970s and is effective if administered early, but its efficacy decreases if given beyond eight hours after an overdose. If left untreated beyond eight hours and liver failure occurs, patients may require a liver transplant. Currently, the need for transplants far exceeds supply. These researchers will examine how other available therapeutics can trigger a faster immune reaction to induce liver regeneration and recovery and save lives.
In total, the University of Kansas Medical Center received $338,800.