University of California San Francisco
Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
Laura Bull, PhD

Laura Bull, PhD

Professor, Department of Medicine, UCSF

Cancer Center Program Memberships

Affiliate Member

Research Summary

The research in my laboratory occurs at the interface of genetics and hepatology. We identify and study genetic factors contributing to development of cholestatic liver disease in people and mouse models.


Yale University, New Haven, CT, BS, 1986, Mol. Biophysics & Biochemistry
University of California, San Francisco, PhD, 1993, Biochemistry
University of California, San Francisco, Postdoc Fellow, 1994-1998, Neurogenetics

Professional Experience

  • 1986-1987
    Visiting Researcher, Institute for Radiation Biology, University of Münster, Germany
  • 1994-1998
    Postdoctoral Scholar, LPPI, University of California, San Francisco
  • 1998-1999
    Postgraduate Researcher, LPPI, University of California, San Francisco
  • 1999-2005
    Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2005-2011
    Associate Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2011-present
    Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco

Honors & Awards

  • 1982-1983
    National Merit Scholarship
  • 1986-1987
    Heinrich Hertz Stiftung Foundation Award
  • 1987-1990
    National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship
  • 1995-1997
    National Alliance for Research in Schizophrenia and Depression, Young Investigator Award
  • 1995-1997
    National Research Service Award, Post-doctoral Fellowship
  • 2000-2001
    Howard Hughes Medical Institute, HHMI Research Resources Program
  • 2003
    UCSF Faculty Development Award
  • 2004
    Invited Outside Expert Examiner, Ph.D. thesis of Saskia van Mil, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  • 2006
    Invited External Examiner, Ph.D. thesis of Veronica Coronado, University of Alberta, Canada.

Selected Publications

  1. Ovadia C, Seed PT, Sklavounos A, Geenes V, Di Ilio C, Chambers J, Kohari K, Bacq Y, Bozkurt N, Brun-Furrer R, Bull L, Estiú MC, Grymowicz M, Gunaydin B, Hague WM, Haslinger C, Hu Y, Kawakita T, Kebapcilar AG, Kebapcilar L, Kondrackiene J, Koster MPH, Kowalska-Kanka A, Kupcinskas L, Lee RH, Locatelli A, Macias RIR, Marschall HU, Oudijk MA, Raz Y, Rimon E, Shan D, Shao Y, Tribe R, Tripodi V, Yayla Abide C, Yenidede I, Thornton JG, Chappell LC, Williamson C. Association of adverse perinatal outcomes of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy with biochemical markers: results of aggregate and individual patient data meta-analyses. Lancet. 2019 03 02; 393(10174):899-909.
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  2. Berauer JP, Mezina AI, Okou DT, Sabo A, Muzny DM, Gibbs RA, Hegde MR, Chopra P, Cutler DJ, Perlmutter DH, Bull LN, Thompson RJ, Loomes KM, Spinner NB, Rajagopalan R, Guthery SL, Moore B, Yandell M, Harpavat S, Magee JC, Kamath BM, Molleston JP, Bezerra JA, Murray KF, Alonso EM, Rosenthal P, Squires RH, Wang KS, Finegold MJ, Russo P, Sherker AH, Sokol RJ, Karpen SJ. Identification of Polycystic Kidney Disease 1 Like 1 Gene Variants in Children With Biliary Atresia Splenic Malformation Syndrome. Hepatology. 2019 Jan 21.
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  3. Bull LN, Thompson RJ. Progressive Familial Intrahepatic Cholestasis. Clin Liver Dis. 2018 11; 22(4):657-669.
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  4. Bull LN, Pawlikowska L, Strautnieks S, Jankowska I, Czubkowski P, Dodge JL, Emerick K, Wanty C, Wali S, Blanchard S, Lacaille F, Byrne JA, van Eerde AM, Kolho KL, Houwen R, Lobritto S, Hupertz V, McClean P, Mieli-Vergani G, Sokal E, Rosenthal P, Whitington PF, Pawlowska J, Thompson RJ. Outcomes of surgical management of familial intrahepatic cholestasis 1 and bile salt export protein deficiencies. Hepatol Commun. 2018 May; 2(5):515-528.
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  5. Wang KS, Tiao G, Bass LM, Hertel PM, Mogul D, Kerkar N, Clifton M, Azen C, Bull L, Rosenthal P, Stewart D, Superina R, Arnon R, Bozic M, Brandt ML, Dillon PA, Fecteau A, Iyer K, Kamath B, Karpen S, Karrer F, Loomes KM, Mack C, Mattei P, Miethke A, Soltys K, Turmelle YP, West K, Zagory J, Goodhue C, Shneider BL. Analysis of surgical interruption of the enterohepatic circulation as a treatment for pediatric cholestasis. Hepatology. 2017 05; 65(5):1645-1654.
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  6. Grammatikopoulos T, Sambrotta M, Strautnieks S, Foskett P, Knisely AS, Wagner B, Deheragoda M, Starling C, Mieli-Vergani G, Smith J, Bull L, Thompson RJ. Mutations in DCDC2 (doublecortin domain containing protein 2) in neonatal sclerosing cholangitis. J Hepatol. 2016 12; 65(6):1179-1187.
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  7. de Waart DR, Naik J, Utsunomiya KS, Duijst S, Ho-Mok K, Bolier AR, Hiralall J, Bull LN, Bosma PJ, Oude Elferink RP, Paulusma CC. ATP11C targets basolateral bile salt transporter proteins in mouse central hepatocytes. Hepatology. 2016 07; 64(1):161-74.
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  8. Bull LN, Hu D, Shah S, Temple L, Silva K, Huntsman S, Melgar J, Geiser MT, Sanford U, Ortiz JA, Lee RH, Kusanovic JP, Ziv E, Vargas JE. Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy (ICP) in U.S. Latinas and Chileans: Clinical features, Ancestry Analysis, and Admixture Mapping. PLoS One. 2015; 10(6):e0131211.
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  9. Thompson RJ, Bull LN. Treating genetic disease: Expanding the options. Hepatology. 2015 Aug; 62(2):349-51.
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  10. Sambrotta M, Strautnieks S, Papouli E, Rushton P, Clark BE, Parry DA, Logan CV, Newbury LJ, Kamath BM, Ling S, Grammatikopoulos T, Wagner BE, Magee JC, Sokol RJ, Mieli-Vergani G, Smith JD, Johnson CA, McClean P, Simpson MA, Knisely AS, Bull LN, Thompson RJ. Mutations in TJP2 cause progressive cholestatic liver disease. Nat Genet. 2014 Apr; 46(4):326-8.
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  11. Bull LN, Vargas J. Serum bile acids in intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy: not just a diagnostic test. Hepatology. 2014 Apr; 59(4):1220-2.
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  12. Shah S, Conlin LK, Gomez L, Aagenaes Ø, Eiklid K, Knisely AS, Mennuti MT, Matthews RP, Spinner NB, Bull LN. CCBE1 mutation in two siblings, one manifesting lymphedema-cholestasis syndrome, and the other, fetal hydrops. PLoS One. 2013; 8(9):e75770.
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  13. Setchell KD, Heubi JE, Shah S, Lavine JE, Suskind D, Al-Edreesi M, Potter C, Russell DW, O'Connell NC, Wolfe B, Jha P, Zhang W, Bove KE, Knisely AS, Hofmann AF, Rosenthal P, Bull LN. Genetic defects in bile acid conjugation cause fat-soluble vitamin deficiency. Gastroenterology. 2013 May; 144(5):945-955.e6; quiz e14-5.
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  14. Hadžic N, Bull LN, Clayton PT, Knisely AS. Diagnosis in bile acid-CoA: amino acid N-acyltransferase deficiency. World J Gastroenterol. 2012 Jul 07; 18(25):3322-6.
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  15. Rook M, Vargas J, Caughey A, Bacchetti P, Rosenthal P, Bull L. Fetal outcomes in pregnancies complicated by intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy in a Northern California cohort. PLoS One. 2012; 7(3):e28343.
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  16. Pawlikowska L, Strautnieks S, Jankowska I, Czubkowski P, Emerick K, Antoniou A, Wanty C, Fischler B, Jacquemin E, Wali S, Blanchard S, Nielsen IM, Bourke B, McQuaid S, Lacaille F, Byrne JA, van Eerde AM, Kolho KL, Klomp L, Houwen R, Bacchetti P, Lobritto S, Hupertz V, McClean P, Mieli-Vergani G, Shneider B, Nemeth A, Sokal E, Freimer NB, Knisely AS, Rosenthal P, Whitington PF, Pawlowska J, Thompson RJ, Bull LN. Differences in presentation and progression between severe FIC1 and BSEP deficiencies. J Hepatol. 2010 Jul; 53(1):170-8.
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  17. Shah S, Sanford UR, Vargas JC, Xu H, Groen A, Paulusma CC, Grenert JP, Pawlikowska L, Sen S, Elferink RP, Bull LN. Strain background modifies phenotypes in the ATP8B1-deficient mouse. PLoS One. 2010 Feb 01; 5(2):e8984.
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  18. Stapelbroek JM, Peters TA, van Beurden DH, Curfs JH, Joosten A, Beynon AJ, van Leeuwen BM, van der Velden LM, Bull L, Oude Elferink RP, van Zanten BA, Klomp LW, Houwen RH. ATP8B1 is essential for maintaining normal hearing. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Jun 16; 106(24):9709-14.
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  19. Emerick KM, Elias MS, Melin-Aldana H, Strautnieks S, Thompson RJ, Bull LN, Knisely As, Whitington PF, Green RM. Bile composition in Alagille Syndrome and PFIC patients having Partial External Biliary Diversion. BMC Gastroenterol. 2008 Oct 20; 8:47.
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  20. Groen A, Kunne C, Jongsma G, van den Oever K, Mok KS, Petruzzelli M, Vrins CL, Bull L, Paulusma CC, Oude Elferink RP. Abcg5/8 independent biliary cholesterol excretion in Atp8b1-deficient mice. Gastroenterology. 2008 Jun; 134(7):2091-100.
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