Featured Profile

Professor Alberto Smith

Each year, the D. Eugene Strandness, Jr., MD Memorial Lecture recognizes the significant contributions of an individual in research, education or clinical investigation in the field of venous diseases.  Chosen by the president of the American Venous Forum and confirmed by the Forum’s Executive Committee, the 2014 recipient of this distinctive honor is Alberto Smith, Professor of Vascular Science and Head of the Academic Department of Surgery at King’s College London.  Professor Smith presented a talk entitled Insights into Mechanisms That Regulate the Resolution of Venous Thrombi.

Professor Smith leads an internationally competitive research team with research interests in the field of tissue remodeling in vascular diseases. His team uses a range of research approaches including models of disease, biochemical, histological, genetic and novel imaging techniques. His research in this area (in particular venous disease) has been funded by over 40 peer-reviewed research grants from funders such as the Research Councils of the UK (MRC and BBSRC), the Wellcome Trust, the British Heart Foundation, the National Institute fro Health Research, The Royal College of Surgeons of England as well as industrial sources. This work has generated over 120 papers and several book chapters (see examples below) and his students have been the recipients of over 20 International and National awards.

Professor Smith’s contributions to the area of venous disease have been in unraveling the mechanisms that regulate: thrombus resolution; venous ulcer healing; and the development and maintenance of vein valves. His recent manuscript published in Circulation 2013, on ‘the mechanisms that give rise to the T1 magnetic resonance signal in a thrombus and the utility of T1 mapping in predicting the susceptibility to lysis’, takes the experimental data derived from his model of venous thrombosis a step closer to the clinic.

His current activity in the venous field includes work that attempts to define:

  • The utility of T1 mapping, in conjunction with other novel MRI modalities, to predict the susceptibility of a thrombus to lysis in man.
  • The role of the macrophage in thrombus removal.
  • Investigation of the physicogenetic regulatory mechanisms that control vein valve development and maintenance.