Michael Heffernan, BSc, MD, DABD

San Luis Dermatology and Laser Clinic

15 Santa Rosa Street
San Luis Obispo, California, USA


Specialty: Dermatology

Dr. Michael Heffernan, Dermatologist

Research Interests: Actinic Keratoses, Alopecia, Basal Cell Carcinoma, Blistering Disorders, Dermatitis, Herpes Infections, Psoriasis, Psoriatic Arthritis, Rosacea, Tinea Corporis, Tinea Cruris, Tinea Pedis, Tinea Versicolor


Dr. Heffernan is an owner of San Luis Dermatology and the President of Heffernan Consulting LLC in San Luis Obispo, CA.  As a researcher, Dr. Heffernan leads the US Dermatology operations for Probity Medical Research, a global consortium of clinical research sites. Dr. Heffernan has been the author of over 70 publications and textbook chapters.  He has been an investigator on over 150 research protocols and he has given over 500 lectures around the globe. 


Prior to returning to the practice of Dermatology, Dr. Heffernan was a Distinguished Medical Fellow and Senior Medical Director for Eli Lilly & Co.  Previously, he served as Chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine.  He has held faculty appointments at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Washington University School of Medicine, and the Indiana University School of Medicine.


Click to view Dr. Michael Heffernan's Publications

Muram TM, Sloan JH, Chain JS, Komocsar WJ, Meiklejohn BI, Blauvelt A, Papp K, Heffernan MP, Qian YW, Konrad RJ. A highly sensitive and drug-tolerant anti-drug antibody screening assay for ixekizumab using affinity capture elution. J Invest Dermatol 2016 Jul; 136(7): 1513-5. Epub 2016 Mar 30. PMID: 27039261 / doi: 10.1016/j.jid.2016.01.040

Genovese MC, Braun DK, Erickson JS, Berclaz PY, Banerjee S, Heffernan MP, Carlier H. Safety and Efficacy of Open-label Subcutaneous Ixekizumab Treatment for 48 Weeks in a Phase II Study in Biologic-naïve and TNF-IR Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis. J Rheumatol 2016 Feb; 43(2): 289-97. Epub 2015 Dec 15. PMID: 26669919 / doi: 10.3899/jrheum.140831

Langley RG, Rich P, Menter A, Krueger G, Goldblum O, Dutronc Y, Zhu B, Wei H, Cameron GS, Heffernan MP. Improvement of scalp and nail lesions with ixekizumab in a phase 2 trial in patients with chronic plaque psoriasis. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venerol 2015 Sep; 29(9): 1763-1770. Epub 2015 Feb 18. PMID: 25693783 / doi: 10.1111/jdv.12996

Griffiths CE, Reich K, Lebwohl M, van de Kerkhof P, Paul C, Menter A, Cameron GS, Erickson J, Zhang L, Secrest RJ, Ball S, Braun DK, Osuntokun OO, Heffernan MP, Nickoloff BJ, Papp K, UNCOVER-2 and UNCOVER-3 Investigators. Comparison of ixekizumab with etanercept or placebo in moderate-to-severe psoriasis (UNCOVER-2 and UNCOVER-3): results from two phase 3 randomised trials.  Lancet 2015 Aug; 386(9993): 541-551. Epub 2015 Jun 10. PMID: 26072109 / doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(15)60125-8

Edson-Heredia E, Banerjee S, Zhu B, Maeda-Chubachi T, Cameron GS, Shen W, Heffernan MP, et al. A high level of clinical response is associated with improved patient-reported outcomes in psoriasis: analyses from a phase 2 study in patients treated with ixekizumab. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venerol 2015 Mar. Epub 2015 Mar 13. PMID: 25773781 / doi: 10.1111/jdv.13032

Wang CQ, Suárez-Fariñas M, Nograles KE, Mimoso CA, Shrom D, Dow ER, Heffernan MP, et al. IL-17 induces inflammation-associated gene products in blood monocytes, and treatment with ixekizumab reduces their expression in psoriasis patient blood. J Invest Dermatol 2014 Dec; 134(12): 2990-2993. Epub 2014 Jul 7. PMID: 24999591 / doi: 10.1038/jid.2014.268

Gottlieb AB, Kalb RE, Blauvelt A, Heffernan MP, et al. The efficacy and safety of infliximab in patients with plaque psoriasis who had an inadequate response to etanercept: results of a prospective, multicenter, open-label study. J Am Acad Dermatol 2012 Oct; 67(4): 642-650. Epub 2011 Dec 9. PMID: 22153792  / doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2011.10.020

Rosman IS, Lind AC, Russell MJ, Heffernan MP. Pruritic Scaly Rash on the Arms and Legs. Arch Dermatol 2011 Nov; 147(11): 1317-1322. PMID: 22106122 / doi: 10.1001/archdermatol.2011.325-a

Morrison LK, Shamma HN, Heffernan MP. Persistent Primary Cutaneous Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumor 4 Years after Chemotherapy. J Am Acad Dermatol 2011 Aug; 65(2): 440-441. PMID: 21763576 / doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2010.01.059

Elmets CA, Viner JL, Pentland AP, Cantrell W, Lin HY, Bailey H, Kang S, Linden KG, Heffernan M, et al. Chemoprevention of nonmelanoma skin cancer with celecoxib: a randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial. J Natl Cancer Inst 2010 Dec; 102(24): 1835-1844. Epub 2010 Nov 29.  doi: 10.1093/jnci/djq442

Chen AY, Zirwas MJ, Heffernan MP. Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis: a Review. J Drugs Dermatol 2010 Jul; 9(7): 829-834. PMID: 20677539

Carr DR, Heffernan MP. Innovative uses of rituximab in dermatology. Dermatol Clin 2010 Jul; 28(3): 547-557. PMID: 20510764  / doi: 10.1016/j.det.2010.03.002

Heffernan MP, Leonardi CL. Alefacept for psoriasis. Semin Cutan Med Surg 2010 Mar; 29(1): 53-55. PMID: 20430308 / doi: 10.1016/j.sder.2010.03.002

Heffernan MP. Combining traditional systemic and biologic therapies for psoriasis. Semin Cutan Med Surg 2010 Mar; 29(1): 67-69.  PMID: 20430311 / doi: 10.1016/j.sder.2010.03.003

Kirsner RS, Heffernan MP, Antaya R. Safety and efficacy of tacrolimus ointment versus pimecrolimus cream in the treatment of patients with atopic dermatitis previously treated with corticosteroids. Acta Derm Venerol 2010; 90(1): 58-64. PMID: 20107727  / doi: 10.2340/00015555-0748

Cernik C, Kerns MJ, Moa JC, Heffernan MP. Asymptomatic, edematous upper lip in a 39-year-old woman. Cheilitis granulomatosa (CG).  Arch Dermatol 2009 Jan; 145(1): 77-82. doi: 10.1001/archdermatol.2008.558-a

Morrison LK, Nordlund JJ, Heffernan MP. Persistent cutaneous hyperpigmentation due to hydroxychloroquinone one year after therapy discontinuation. Dermatol Online J 2009 Dec; 15(12): 15. PMID: 20040265

Smith DI, Heffernan MP. Vitiligo after the resolution of psoriatic plaques during treatment with adalimumab. J Am Acad Dermatol 2008 Feb; 58(2 Suppl): S50-2. PMID: 18191709  / doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2006.05.035

Carr DR, Houshmand E, Heffernan MP. Approach to the acute, generalized, blistering patient. Semin Cutan Med Surg 2007 Sep; 26(3): 139-146. PMID: 18070680 / doi: 10.1016/j.sder.2007.09.006

Carr DR, Heffernan MP. Off-label uses of rituximab in dermatology. Dermatol Ther 2007 Jul-Aug; 20(4): 277-287. PMID: 17970893 / doi: 10.1111/j.1529-8019.2007.00141.x

Shikiar R, Heffernan M, Langley RG, William MK, Okun M, Revicki DA. Adalimumab Ttreatment is associated with improvement in health-related quality of life in psoriasis: Patient-reported outcomes from a phase II randomized controlled trial. J Dermatol Treatment 2007; 18(1): 25-31. Epub 2009 Jul 12.  doi: 10.1080/09546630601121060

Heffernan MP, Houshmand E. Treatment options for atopic dermatitis – 2007 update. US Special Populations: Pediatrics Review 2006: 57-58.

Heffernan MP, Bentley DD, Tapia B, Klekotka P. Painful nodule on knee. Arch Dermatol 2007 Jul; 143(7): 937-942. PMID: 17638743 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.143.7.937-f

Heffernan MP, Smith DI, Bentley D, Tabacchi M, Graves, JE. A single-center, open-label, prospective pilot study of subcutaneous efalizumab for oral erosive lichen planus. J Drugs Dermatol 2007 Mar; 6(3): 310-4. PMID: 17373193

Heffernan MP, Nelson MM, Anadkat MJ. A pilot study of the safety and efficacy of picolinicacid gel in the treatment of acne vulgaris. Brit J Dermatol 2007 Mar; 156(3): 548-52. Epub 2006 Dec 6. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2006.07621.x

Xu LY, Bandow GD, Heffernan MP. Crusted violaceous plaques on an immunocompromised host. Arch Dermatol 2007 Mar; 143(3): 417-422. PMID: 17372111 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.143.3.417-g

Heffernan MP, Anadkat, MJ, Smith DI. Adalimumab for pyoderma gangrenosum. Arch Dermatol 2007 Mar; 143(3): 306-8. PMID: 17372094 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.143.3.306

Graves, JE, Sternhell K, Heffernan MP. Off-label uses of biologics in dermatology: rituximab, omalizuab, infliximab, etanercept, adalimumab, efalizumab and alefacept (Part 2 of 2). J Am Acad Dermatol 2007 Jan; 56(1): e55-79. Epub 2006 Nov 7. PMID: 17190618 / doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2006.07.019

Smith DZ, Swammy PM, Heffernan MP. Off-label uses of biologics in dermatology: Interferon and Intravenous Immunoglobulin (Part 1 of 2). J Am Acad Dermatol 2007 Jan; 56(1): e1-54. Epub 2006 Nov 7. PMID: 17190617 / doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2006.06.016

Kerns MJ, Graves JE, Smith DI, Heffernan MP. Off-label uses of biologic agents in dermatology: a 2006 update. Semin Cutan Med Surg 2006 Dec; 25(4): 226-240. PMID: 17174843 / doi: 10.1016/j.sder.2006.08.006

Canizares MJ, Smith DI, Conners MS, Maverick KJ, Heffernan MP. The successful treatment of mucous membrane pemphigoid in 3 patients with etanercept. Arch Dermatol 2006 Nov; 142(11): 1457-61. PMID: 17116836 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.142.11.1457

Heffernan MP, Bentley DD. Successful treatment of mucous membrane pemphigoid with infliximab. Arch Dermatol 2006 Oct; 142(10): 1268-70. PMID: 17043180 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.142.10.1268

Klekotka PA, Faulkner-Jones B, Heffernan MP. A case of CD56+ mycosis fungoides. Arch Dermatol 2006 Oct; 142(10): 1370-2. PMID: 17043207 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.142.10.1370

Gordon KB, Langley RG, Leonardi C, Toth D, Menter MA, Kang S, Heffernan M, Miller B, Hamlin R, Lim L, Zhone J, Hoffman R, Okun MM. Clinical response to adalimumab treatment in patients with moderate to severe psoriasis: double-blind, randomized controlled trial and open-label extension study. J Am Acad Dermatol 2006 Oct; 55(4): 598-606. Epub 2006 Aug 12. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2006.05.027

Graves JE; Jones BF; Lind AC; Heffernan MP. Non-scarring inflammatory alopecia associated with the epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitor gefitinib. J Am Acad Dermatol 2006 Aug; 55(2): 349-53. PMID: 16844529 / doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2005.12.016

Smith DI, Heffernan MP. Vitiligo following the resolution of psoriatic plaques during treatment with adalimumab. Arch Dermatol 2006.

Bentley DD, Graves JE, Smith DI, Heffernan MP. Efalizumab drug induced subacute cutaneous lupus erythematous. J Am Acad Dermatol 2006 May; 54(5 Suppl): S242-3. PMID: 16631956 / doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2005.10.037

Heffernan MP, Saag KG, Robinson JK, Callen JP. Prevention of osteoporosis associated with chronic glucocorticoid therapy. JAMA 2006 Mar 15; 295(11): 1300-3. PMID: 16541489 / doi: 10.1001/jama.295.11.1300

Heffernan MP, Smith DI. Adalimumab for treatment of cutaneous sarcoidosis. Arch Dermatol 2006 Jan; 142(1): 17-19. PMID: 16415380 / doi:10.1001/archderm.142.1.17

Lowe J, Lu D, Heffernan MP. A papule arising in irradiated breast tissue. Arch Dermatol 2006 Jan; 142(1): 101-6. PMID: 16415395 / doi:10.1001/archderm.142.1.101-f

Heffernan MP. The era of cooperation. Arch Dermatol 2006 Jan; 142(1): 93-5. PMID: 16415392 / doi:10.1001/archderm.142.1.93

Heffernan MP, Hurley MY, Martin KS, Smith DI, Anadkat MJ. Alefacept for alopecia areata. Arch Dermatol 2005 Dec; 141(12): 1513-6. PMID: 16365251 / doi: 10.1001/archderm.141.12.1513

Heffernan MP, Nelson MM, Smith DI, Chung JA. Tacrolimus 0.1% ointment in the treatment of discoid lupus erythematous. Arch Dermatol 2005 Sep; 141(9): 1170-2. PMID: 16172325 / doi:10.1001/archderm.141.9.1170

Heffernan MP, Anadkat MJ. Recalcitrant cutaneous sarcoidosis responding to infliximab. Arch Dermatol 2005 Jul; 141(6): 910-1. PMID: 16027318 / doi:10.1001/archderm.141.7.910

Gardner J, Nelson MM, Heffernan, MP. Chronic cutaneous fusariosis. Arch Dermatol 2005 Jun; 141(6): 794-5. PMID: 15967939 / doi:10.1001/archderm.141.6.794

Leyden J, Bergfeld W, Drake L, Dunlap F, Goldman M, Gottlieb A, Heffernan, MP, et al. A systemic type I 5a-reductase inhibitor is ineffective in the treatment of acne vulgaris. J Am Acad Dermatol 2004 Mar; 50(3): 443-7. PMID: 14988688 / doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2003.07.021

Anadkat MJ, Tobler CE, Heffernan MP. Safety of imiquimod 5% cream in subjects kidney or liver transplants (abstract 338). J Invest Dermatol 2004 Mar; 122(3): A57. doi: 10.1111/j.1523-1747.2004..x

Heffernan MP, Anadkat MJ, Amin AN. PCL-016 gel (NV-02) in the treatment of acne vulgaris: a pilot study (abstract 337). J Invest Dermatol 2004 Mar; 122(3): A57. doi: 10.1111/j.1523-1747.2004..x

Kulczycki A, Nelson M, Eisen A, Heffernan, MP. Scleromyxoedema: treatment of cutaneous and systemic manifestations with high-dose intravenous immunoglobulin. Brit J Dermatol 2003 Dec; 149(6): 1276-1281. Epub 2003 Dec 11.  doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2133.2003.05682.x

Helms C, Cao L, Krueger JG, Wijsman EM, Chamian F, Gordon D, Heffernan MP, Daw J, Robarge J, Ott J, Kwok P-Y, Menter A, Bowcock AM. A putative RUNX1 binding site variant between SLC9A3R1 and NAT9 is associated with psoriasis susceptibility. Nat Genet 2003 Dec; 35(4): 349-56. Epub 2003 Nov 9.  doi: 10.1038/ng1268

Nelson MM, Heffernan MP. Facial signs of systemic disease. Facial Plast Surg Clin North Am 2003 May; 11(2): 175-95. PMID: 15062272 / doi: 10.1016/S1064-7406(02)00048-2

Nelson MM, Heffernan MP. Synopsis of antinuclear antibodies in dermatology. Dermatol Nurs 2002 Jun; 14(3): 165-9, 203. PMID: 12099064

Heffernan MP, Do JH, Mehta J. Antinuclear antibodies in dermatology. Semin Cutan Med Surg 2001 Mar; 20(1): 2-13. PMID: 11308133 / doi: 10.1053/sder.2001.23089

Kim-James HY, Heffernan MP. The diagnosis, evaluation and treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. Curr Probl Dermatol 2001 Nov/Dec; 13(6): 301-340. doi: 10.1067/mdm.2001.119860

Heffernan MP, Smoller BR, Kohler S. Cutaneous epithelioid angioleiomyoma. Am J Dermatopath 1998 Apr; 20(2): 213-7. doi: 10.1097/00000372-199804000-00021

Heffernan MP, Khavari PA. Raindrop seborrheic keratoses: a distinctive pattern on the backs of elderly patients. Arch Dermatol 1998 Mar; 134(3): 382-3. doi: 10.1001/archderm.134.3.382

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