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NCIRE-The Veterans Health Research Institute is the leading private nonprofit institute devoted to Veterans health research in the United States. Our mission is to advance Veterans health through research.

We support the work of some of the nation's foremost physicians and scientists at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, the premier biomedical research facility in the VA system. All have faculty appointments at the University of California, San Francisco, which has its own proud traditions of research and patient care. We also partner with the U.S. Department of Defense to support health research on behalf of our men and women in the Armed Forces.

Those who have served in uniform have given their best for their country. In return, we believe that they deserve nothing less than the best health care research we can provide.

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Alexis Dang, MD

Staff Surgeon, Orthopaedic Sports Medicine, SFVAMC
Assistant Professor in Residence, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, UCSF
Email: alexis.dang@va.gov

Innovating in Models of Musculoskeletal Disease

Dr. Dang is a clinician-scientist focused on sports medicine and orthopaedic surgery. His clinical interest revolve around restoring and preserving musculoskeletal function, with a research focus on cartilage injury and repair. To improve our understanding of the cascade of cartilage injury followed by cartilage degeneration, Dr. Dang has focused his research on developing clinically relevant injury models, including anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture in mice. His research seeks to identify key mediators of cartilage degeneration with the goal of being able to externally modulate these signals through surgical, pharmacologic, or environmental interventions.  In addition to his work on cartilage degeneration he is studying heterotopic bone (HO) formation, a disease that has increase in prevalence in today’s combat Veterans. With HO, there is bone formation in areas that are detrimental, such as in the muscles or around joints, limiting function. Using a novel small animal model of HO, we hope to understand the processes that are involved in this extra bone formation, these processes may then be applied to promote bone formation where it is needed.

To see Dr. Dang on Pub Med, click here.