About 2,000 people in the U.S. develop acute liver failure (ALF) each year. Patients with ALF have dramatic and sometimes devastating disease presentations, often need liver transplants, and have a heavy demand for care and resources.
To study this rare orphan condition, the Acute Liver Failure Study Group (ALFSG) was founded at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas in 1997. We aimed to develop a consortium of investigators and clinical centers that could consolidate data and bio-samples. The Acute Liver Failure Study Group initially consisted of 14 U.S. academic sites, then expanded to 23. Currently 15 sites, all tertiary-care liver transplant centers, constitute the ALFSG.
ALFSG is funded largely by the National Institutes of Health and by the Food and Drug Administration, private donors, and foundations.
The administrative offices are at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, and the Data Coordinating Center is at the Medical University of South Carolina.
A pediatric counterpart, the Pediatric Acute Liver Failure Group (PALF), began at UT Southwestern and is now based at the University of Pittsburgh under the leadership of Robert Squires, Jr., M.D.