We've moved!

This donation page is on the old Big Give website. Please go to theBigGive.org.uk to find current campaigns and opportunities to double your donation.

If you have any queries on the changes, please email us at info@thebiggive.org.uk.

Project information

The Liver for Life Appeal

To create a Bioartificial Liver; a breakthrough in liver disease as important as dialysis was for kidney failure, which will save millions of lives worldwide.

Bringing the Bioartificial Liver Machine from the bench to the bedside.

Charity information: The Liver Group

The Liver Group logo
  • Need


    Liver Disease itself is the 5th leading cause of death in the UK for under 65s and the 2nd commonest cause of death in middle aged UK men; gloablly the WHO estimates it leads to 1-2 million deaths a year.

    Whilst a liver transplant is an effective way of managing conditions that cause acute and chronic liver failure, only 2 in 3 people on the transplant list in the UK get a new liver in time; given that 80% of those with acute liver failure will die without a transplant this is a huge problem.


    The very nature of the liver provides us with an unique opportunity -given time it will regrow after acute damage.

    Thus, our solution - the bioartificial liver temporarily replaces liver function, giving the liver those critical few days necessary to heal itself.

    Our bioartificial liver “buys time” for a sick liver to repair itself in patients with acute liver failure; even in patients with chronic liver disease the bioartificial liver will buy them time until a new liver is available.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    The Development of the Bioartificial Liver Machine (BAL)


    » Further scientific developments and refinements to bring this to a clinical, life saving, reality.

    What success will look like

    Success will be via bringing our Bioartificial Liver Machine from the bench to the bedside.

  • Impact


    In the near futute, once the Bioartificial Liver is a clinical reality, we envisage that a patient with liver failure will be treated, probably for several days, by taking their blood with plastic tubes, passing the blood over a culture of liver cells, and returning the 'cleaned' blood to the patient. Using our Bioartificial Liver in this manner will save millions of lives globally.


    We have learnt from the main thrust of our activity, developmental work – to bring us to the stage when major funds can be earned – is both prolonged and expensive.
    To negate any potential issues arising we shall continue to fund-raise, so as to continually be in a postion to further develop and refine the Bioartificial Liver.


    We contact donors annually regarding the Liver for Life Appeal, make our Chairman's annual progress reports available on our website, and welcome visits and contact from donors.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £1,000,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £550,000 Researchers Funding for our Researchers
      £350,000 Equipment and Governance Providing the Equipment, Facilities, and Consumables needed to carry out the research
      £100,000 PhD Studentships Funding that will allow us to offer PhD studentships to help train aspiring Researchers
  • Background


    We are based at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead, London, however our research is performed in collaboration with the University of Miskolc in Hungary and the University of Cape Town.


    The 650 million people worldwide the World Health Organisation estimates suffer from a condition effecting the liver.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Charity has been established for almost twenty years now, whilst the research group at the Charity's core has been in existence for nearly thirty, during which time it has gained an international reputation in studies of the control of liver growth.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Prof Humphrey Hodgson FRCP, F Med Sci

    Chairman of the Charity

    Prof Clare Selden

    Trustee charged with monitoring and supervising the Charity's daily activities