International Journal of Hepatology
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Open Access journal
ISSN (Print) 2090-3448 - ISSN (Online) 2090-3456
Published by Hindawi [333 journals]
- Imaging the Abdominal Manifestations of Cystic Fibrosis
Abstract: Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a multisystem disease with a range of abdominal manifestations including those involving the liver, pancreas, and kidneys. Recent advances in management of the respiratory complications of the disease has led to a greater life expectancy in patients with CF. Subsequently, there is increasing focus on the impact of abdominal disease on quality of life and survival. Liver cirrhosis is the most important extrapulmonary cause of death in CF, yet significant challenges remain in the diagnosis of CF related liver disease. The capacity to predict those patients at risk of developing cirrhosis remains a significant challenge. We review representative abdominal imaging findings in patients with CF selected from the records of two academic health centres, with a view to increasing familiarity with the abdominal manifestations of the disease. We review their presentation and expected imaging findings, with a focus on the challenges facing diagnosis of the hepatic manifestations of the disease. An increased familiarity with these abdominal manifestations will facilitate timely diagnosis and management, which is paramount to further improving outcomes for patients with cystic fibrosis.
PubDate: Sun, 29 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +000
- Predictive Factors for a Long Hospital Stay in Patients Undergoing
Abstract: Background. Although the advantages of laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) over open cholecystectomy are immediately obvious and appreciated, several patients need a postoperative hospital stay of more than 24 hours. Thus, the predictive factors for this longer stay need to be investigated. The aim of this study was to identify the causes of a long hospital stay after LC. Methods. This is a retrospective cohort study with 500 successful elective LC patients being included in the analysis. Short hospital stay was defined as being discharged within 24 hours after the operation, whereas long hospital stay was defined as the need for a stay of more than 24 hours after the operation. Results. Using multivariable analysis, ten independent predictive factors were identified for a long hospital stay. These included patients with cirrhosis, patients with a history of previous acute cholecystitis, cholangitis, or pancreatitis, patients on anticoagulation with warfarin, patients with standard-pressure pneumoperitoneum, patients who had been given metoclopramide as an intraoperative antiemetic drug, patients who had been using abdominal drain, patients who had numeric rating scale for pain > 3, patients with an oral analgesia requirement > 2 doses, complications, and private ward admission. Conclusions. LC difficulties were important predictive factors for a long hospital stay, as well as medication and operative factors.
PubDate: Mon, 23 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +000
- A Comprehensive Review of Portosystemic Collaterals in Cirrhosis:
Historical Aspects, Anatomy, and Classifications
Abstract: Portosystemic collateral formation in cirrhosis plays an important part in events that define the natural history in affected patients. A detailed understanding of collateral anatomy and hemodynamics in cirrhotics is essential to envisage diagnosis, management, and outcomes of portal hypertension. In this review, we provide detailed insights into the historical, anatomical, and hemodynamic aspects to portal hypertension and collateral pathways in cirrhosis with emphasis on the various classification systems.
PubDate: Thu, 15 Dec 2016 09:54:46 +000
- Cardiovascular Autonomic Dysfunction in Patients of Nonalcoholic Fatty
Abstract: Aim. The present study was designed to evaluate the heart rate variability (HRV) in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and to assess the effect of grade of NAFLD and diabetic status on HRV. Methods. This cross-sectional study included 75 subjects (25 NAFLD without diabetes, 25 NAFLD with diabetes, and 25 controls). Measurements included anthropometry, body composition analysis, estimation of plasma glucose, serum lipids, hsCRP, and serum insulin. HRV analysis was performed in both time and frequency domains. Results. The time and frequency domain indices of overall variability (SDNN, total power) were significantly lower in NAFLD with diabetes as compared to the controls. However, the LF : HF ratio did not differ among the three groups. The variables related to obesity, lipid profile, and glucose metabolism were also higher in NAFLD with diabetes and those with Grade II NAFLD without diabetes, as compared to controls. Multivariate stepwise regression analysis showed a negative correlation between HRV and total cholesterol and fat percentage. Conclusion. The grade of NAFLD as well as diabetic status contributes to the decrease in the cardiovascular autonomic function, with diabetic status rather than grade of NAFLD playing a critical role. Serum lipids and adiposity may also contribute to cardiac autonomic dysfunction.
PubDate: Thu, 08 Dec 2016 07:20:36 +000
- A Combination of Leucine, Metformin, and Sildenafil Treats Nonalcoholic
Fatty Liver Disease and Steatohepatitis in Mice
Abstract: Sirt1, AMPK, and eNOS modulate hepatic energy metabolism and inflammation and are key players in the development of NASH. L-leucine, an allosteric Sirt1 activator, synergizes with low doses of metformin or sildenafil on the AMPK-eNOS-Sirt1 pathway to reverse mild NAFLD in preclinical mouse models. Here we tested a possible multicomponent synergy to yield greater therapeutic efficacy in NAFLD/NASH. Liver cells and macrophages or an atherogenic diet induced NASH mouse model was treated with two-way and three-way combinations. The three-way combination Sild-Met-Leu increased hepatic fatty acid oxidation and reduced lipogenic gene expression and inflammatory marker in vitro. In mice, Sild-Met-Leu reduced the diet induced increases of ALT, TGFβ, PAI-1, IL1β, and TNFα, hepatic collagen expression, and nearly completely reversed hepatocyte ballooning and triglyceride accumulation, while all two-way combinations had only modest effects. Therefore, these data provide preclinical evidence for therapeutic efficacy of Sild-Met-Leu in the treatment of NAFLD and NASH.
PubDate: Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:18:18 +000
- Hyperammonemia Is Associated with Increasing Severity of Both Liver
Cirrhosis and Hepatic Encephalopathy
Abstract: Background. Hyperammonemia resulting from chronic liver disease (CLD) can potentially challenge and damage any organ system of the body, particularly the brain. However, there is still some controversy regarding the diagnostic or prognostic values of serum ammonia in patients with over hepatic encephalopathy, especially in the setting of acute-on-chronic or chronic liver failure. Moreover, the association of serum ammonia with worsening Child-Pugh grade of liver cirrhosis has not been studied. Objective. This study was conducted to solve the controversy regarding the association between hyperammonemia and cirrhosis, especially hepatic encephalopathy in chronically failed liver. Material and Methods. In this study, 171 cirrhotic patients had their serum ammonia measured and analyzed by SPSS version 16. Chi-squared test and one-way ANOVA were applied. Results. The study had 110 male and 61 female participants. The mean age of all the participants in years was . The mean duration (years) of CLD was while the mean Child-Pugh (CP) score was . Chronic viral hepatitis alone was responsible for 71.3% of the cases. Moreover, 86.5% of participants had hepatic encephalopathy (HE). The frequency of hyperammonemia was 67.3%, more frequent in males (, -score = 2.4, and ) than in females (, -score = 2.4, and ), and had a statistically significant relationship with increasing CP grade of cirrhosis ( = 27.46, , Phi = 0.40, and ). Furthermore, serum ammonia level was higher in patients with hepatic encephalopathy than in those without it; . Conclusion. Hyperammonemia is associated with both increasing Child-Pugh grade of liver cirrhosis and hepatic encephalopathy.
PubDate: Tue, 25 Oct 2016 12:32:32 +000
- The Use of Thrombopoietin Receptor Agonists for Correction of
Thrombocytopenia prior to Elective Procedures in Chronic Liver Diseases:
Review of Current Evidence
Abstract: Patients with chronic liver diseases (CLD) undergo a range of invasive procedures during their clinical lifetime. Various hemostatic abnormalities are frequently identified during the periprocedural work-up; including thrombocytopenia. Thrombocytopenia of cirrhosis is multifactorial in origin, and decreased activity of thrombopoietin has been identified to be a major cause. Liver is an important site of thrombopoietin production and its levels are decreased in patients with cirrhosis. Severe thrombocytopenia (platelet counts < 60–75,000/µL) is associated with increased risk of bleeding with invasive procedures. In recent years, compounds with thrombopoietin receptor agonist activity have been studied as therapeutic options to raise platelet counts in CLD. We reviewed the use of Eltrombopag, Romiplostim, and Avatrombopag prior to various invasive procedures in patients with CLD. These agents seem promising in raising platelet counts before elective procedures resulting in reduction in platelet transfusions, and they also enabled more patients to undergo the procedures. However, these studies were not primarily aimed at comparing bleeding episodes among groups. Use of these agents had some adverse consequences, importantly being the occurrence of portal vein thrombosis. This review highlights the need of further studies to identify reliable methods of safely reducing the provoked bleeding risk linked to thrombocytopenia in CLD.
PubDate: Sun, 09 Oct 2016 10:06:04 +000
- Prognostication of Learning Curve on Surgical Management of Vasculobiliary
Injuries after Cholecystectomy
Abstract: Background. Concomitant vascular injury might adversely impact outcomes after iatrogenic bile duct injury (IBDI). Whether a new HPB center should embark upon repair of complex biliary injuries with associated vascular injuries during learning curve is unknown. The objective of this study was to determine outcome of surgical management of IBDI with and without vascular injuries in a new HPB center during its learning curve. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed patients who underwent surgical management of IBDI at our center. A total of 39 patients were included. Patients without (Group 1) and with vascular injuries (Group 2) were compared. Outcome was defined as 90-day morbidity and mortality. Results. Median age was 39 (20–80) years. There were 10 (25.6%) vascular injuries. E2 injuries were associated significantly with high frequency of vascular injuries (66% versus 15.1%) (). Right hepatectomy was performed in three patients. Out of these, two had a right hepatic duct stricture and one patient had combined right arterial and portal venous injury. The number of patients who developed postoperative complications was not significantly different between the two groups (11.1% versus 23.4%) (). Conclusion. Learning curve is not a negative prognostic variable in the surgical management of iatrogenic vasculobiliary injuries after cholecystectomy.
PubDate: Wed, 20 Jul 2016 13:44:20 +000
- Different Nodules Identified during Liver Explant Gross Examination:
Relevance and Need for Sectioning—Experience from India
Abstract: Objective. The goal of this study was to determine the etiopathological association of various hepatic nodules identified during gross examination of liver explants specimen and the grossing aspects of these abnormal nodules especially those smaller than 1 cm in diameter. Our aim was to analyze whether there is any association of macroregenerative and dysplastic nodule with hepatocellular carcinoma. Materials and Methods. Fifty consecutive liver explants specimens were analyzed for the presence of any abnormal nodule (abnormal nodule defined as any nodule different in color, texture, and appearance from adjacent liver tissue). Results. Of the total 40 abnormal nodules identified in 50 liver explant specimens, there were 12 (30%) HCC [including 5 small HCC (41% of total HCC) and 1 steatohepatitic HCC (8% of total HCC)], 11 (27%) MRNs, 8 (20%) dysplastic nodules, and 9 (22%) necrotic nodules. Most cases (72%) of MRN are seen in hepatitis C virus related cirrhosis with only 2 cases having associated HCC. Most cases of HCC were seen in cases of HBV associated cirrhosis (60%). The association of MRN was not found to be significantly associated with HCC with a value of 1.0. Dysplastic nodules were found to be significantly associated with HCC with a value of 0.02. Conclusion. In hepatic carcinogenesis, the role of MRN does not appear to be significant. However, the presence of dysplastic nodules is significantly associated with HCC. The study identified another variant of cirrhotic nodules herein called necrotic nodules that are mostly tan greenish in color and
PubDate: Wed, 22 Jun 2016 08:45:45 +000
- Elbasvir/Grazoprevir: A Review of the Latest Agent in the Fight against
Abstract: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is estimated to affect up to 150 million people worldwide. Despite worldwide prevalence, treatment modalities prior to 2011 remained suboptimal, with low virologic response rates and intolerable side effect profiles. Fortunately, the landscape of treatment for chronic hepatitis C has rapidly evolved since the introduction of HCV NS3/4 protease inhibitors in 2011. Elbasvir, a NS5A inhibitor, combined with grazoprevir, a NS3/4A protease inhibitor, is the latest FDA-approved therapy for patients with genotype 1 or 4 chronic hepatitis C, with or without compensated cirrhosis. This review will focus on the current literature and clinical evidence supporting elbasvir/grazoprevir as first-line therapy in patients with genotypes 1 and 4 chronic hepatitis C.
PubDate: Wed, 15 Jun 2016 13:50:48 +000
- The Effect of Artichoke Leaf Extract on Alanine Aminotransferase and
Aspartate Aminotransferase in the Patients with Nonalcoholic
Abstract: Background. Based on recent basic and clinical investigations, the extract of artichoke (Cynara scolymus) leaf has been revealed to be used for hepatoprotective and cholesterol reducing purposes. We aimed to assess the therapeutic effects of artichoke on biochemical and liver biomarkers in patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Methods. In a randomized double blind clinical trial, 60 consecutive patients suffering NASH were randomly assigned to receive Cynara scolymus extract (as 6 tablets per day consisting of 2700 mg extract of the herb) as the intervention group or placebo as the control group for two months. Results. Comparing changes in study markers following interventions showed improvement in liver enzymes. The levels of triglycerides and cholesterol were significantly reduced in the group treated with Cynara scolymus when compared to placebo group. To compare the role of Cynara scolymus use with placebo in changes in study parameters, multivariate linear regression models were employed indicating higher improvement in liver enzymes and also lipid profile particularly triglycerides and total cholesterol following administration of Cynara scolymus in comparison with placebo use. Conclusion. This study sheds light on the potential hepatoprotective activity and hypolipidemic effect of Cynara scolymus in management of NASH. This clinical trial is registered in the IRCT, Iranian Registry of Clinical Trials, by number IRCT2014070218321N1.
PubDate: Wed, 11 May 2016 07:08:14 +000
- Therapeutic Potential of HGF-Expressing Human Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal
Stem Cells in Mice with Acute Liver Failure
Abstract: Human umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells (UCMSCs) are particularly attractive cells for cellular and gene therapy in acute liver failure (ALF). However, the efficacy of this cell therapy in animal studies needs to be significantly improved before it can be translated into clinics. In this study, we investigated the therapeutic potential of UCMSCs that overexpress hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) in an acetaminophen-induced acute liver failure mouse model. We found that the HGF-UCMSC cell therapy protected animals from acute liver failure by reducing liver damage and prolonging animal survival. The therapeutic effect of HGF-UCMSCs was associated with the increment in serum glutathione (GSH) and hepatic enzymes that maintain redox homeostasis, including γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase (γ-GCS), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase (CAT). Immunohistochemical staining confirmed that HGF-UCMSCs were mobilized to the injured areas of the liver. Additionally, HGF-UCMSCs modulated apoptosis by upregulating the antiapoptotic Bcl2 and downregulating proapoptotic genes, including Bax and TNFα. Taken together, these data suggest that ectopic expression of HGF in UCMSCs protects animals from acetaminophen-induced acute liver failure through antiapoptosis and antioxidation mechanisms.
PubDate: Sun, 28 Feb 2016 14:29:40 +000
- Outcome following Resection of Biliary Cystadenoma: A Single Centre
Experience and Literature Review
Abstract: Background. Biliary cystadenomas (BCAs) are rare, benign, potentially malignant cystic lesions of the liver, accounting for less than 5% of cystic liver tumours. We report the outcome following resection of biliary cystadenoma from a single tertiary centre. Methods. Data of patients who had resection of BCA between January 1993 and July 2014 were obtained from liver surgical database. Patient demographics, clinicopathological characteristics, operative data, and postoperative outcome were analysed. Results. 29 patients had surgery for BCA. Male : female ratio was 1 : 28. Clinical presentation was abdominal pain (74%), jaundice (20%), abdominal mass (14%), and deranged liver function tests (3%). Cyst characteristics included septations (48%), wall thickening (31%), wall irregularity (38%), papillary projections (10%), and mural nodule (3%). Surgical procedures included atypical liver resection (52%), left hemihepatectomy (34%), right hemihepatectomy (10%), and left lateral segmentectomy (3%). Median length of stay was 7 (IQ 6.5–8.5) days. Two patients developed postoperative bile leak. No patients had malignancy on final histology. Median follow-up was 13 (IQ 6.5–15.7) years. One patient developed delayed biliary stricture and one died of cholangiocarcinoma 11 years later. Conclusion. Biliary cystadenomas can be resected safely with significantly low morbidity. Malignant transformation and recurrence are rare. Complete surgical resection provides a cure.
PubDate: Tue, 29 Dec 2015 12:37:33 +000
- Factors That Could Impact on Liver Fibrosis Staging by Transient
Abstract: Transient elastography (TE) based on liver stiffness measurement (LSM) is one of the most validated noninvasive methods for liver fibrosis staging in patients with chronic liver diseases. This method is painless, has no potential complications, is rapid (100 exams), in a 3-hour fasting status, and its results should be handled by specialist clinicians that are aware of the limitations of this method.
PubDate: Sun, 06 Dec 2015 11:47:44 +000
- Chronic Hepatitis C: An Overview of Evidence on Epidemiology and
Management from a Brazilian Perspective
Abstract: Chronic hepatitis C remains one of the main causes of chronic liver disease worldwide and presents a variable natural history ranging from minimal changes to advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis and its complications, such as development of hepatocellular carcinoma. Approximately, 1.45 million people are estimated to be infected by HCV in Brazil representing a major public health issue. The aim of this paper was to review the epidemiology and management of chronic hepatitis C from a Brazilian perspective. The management of chronic hepatitis C has been challenged by the use of noninvasive methods to stage liver fibrosis as an alternative to liver biopsy and the high cost of new interferon-free antiviral treatments. Moreover, the need of cost-effectiveness analysis in hepatitis C and the recent changes in treatment protocols were discussed.
PubDate: Sun, 29 Nov 2015 08:02:23 +000
- Growing Up: Not an Easy Transition—Perspectives of Patients and Parents
Abstract: The transition from pediatric to adult care is a critical time when children with chronic illness sustain high morbidity and mortality. Transition services need to be focused on the adolescents’ needs, which may differ from those perceived by healthcare providers. In this study, a survey of 31 patients with chronic liver disease and/or liver transplant who were “transferred” to adult services within the last 3 years was conducted. Patients were asked about their current health status and their perceptions of the overall transfer process. The mean age at transfer was 19.81 (18–21) years. Almost half the patients (47%) were not seen at the adult facility until 2–6 months after leaving the Children’s hospital and 20% were not seen until 6–12 months. About 20% had their first contact with adult services through an emergency room visit. About 19% reported being out of medication during transition. Of the transplanted patients, 19% were being evaluated for a retransplant. The majority (82%) felt that an increased emphasis on promoting independence and “letting go” both by parents and by pediatric care providers was critical in their transition to independence and adult care services. This study provides thought-provoking insights, which are critical in designing the ideal transition program for children with chronic diseases.
PubDate: Sun, 22 Nov 2015 14:32:20 +000
- Acalculous Acute Cholecystitis in Previously Healthy Children: General
Overview and Analysis of Pediatric Infectious Cases
Abstract: Acute acalculous cholecystitis (AAC) is an inflammation of the gallbladder, which does not appear to be associated with the presence of gallstones. AAC is estimated to represent more than 50% of cases of acute cholecystitis in the pediatric population. Although this pathology was initially described in critically ill patients, actually most pediatric cases have been observed during several infectious diseases. Particularly, here we reviewed pediatric infectious acute acalculous cholecystitis and analyzed the pathophysiological and clinical aspects of bacterial and viral forms.
PubDate: Wed, 11 Nov 2015 12:03:12 +000
- Serum Adiponectin, Vitamin D, and Alpha-Fetoprotein in Children with
Chronic Hepatitis C: Can They Predict Treatment Response'
Abstract: Background & Aims. The currently available treatment for chronic hepatitis C (CHC) in children is costly and with much toxicity. So, predicting the likelihood of response before starting therapy is important. Methods. Serum adiponectin, vitamin D, and alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) were measured before starting pegylated-interferon/ribavirin therapy for 50 children with CHC. Another 21 healthy children were recruited as controls. Results. Serum adiponectin, vitamin D, and AFP were higher in the CHC group than healthy controls (, , and , resp.). In univariate analysis, serum adiponectin was significantly higher in responders than nonresponders () and at a cutoff value ≥8.04 ng/mL it can predict treatment response by 77.8% sensitivity and 92.9% specificity, while both AFP and viremia were significantly lower in responders than nonresponders, and , respectively, and at cutoff values ≤3.265 ng/mL and ≤235,384 IU/mL, respectively, they can predict treatment response with a sensitivity of 83.3% for both and specificity of 85.7% and 78.6%, respectively. In multivariate analysis, adiponectin was found to be the only independent predictor of treatment response (). Conclusions. The pretreatment serum level of adiponectin can predict the likelihood of treatment response, thus avoiding toxicities for those unlikely to respond to therapy.
PubDate: Tue, 10 Nov 2015 09:03:31 +000
- Evaluation of Serum Cystatin C as a Marker of Early Renal Impairment in
Patients with Liver Cirrhosis
Abstract: Background. Serum cystatin C (CysC) was proposed as an effective reflection of the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). However, its role in patients with liver cirrhosis has not been extensively verified especially in the detection of early RI. Patients and Methods. Seventy consecutive potential candidates for living donor liver transplantation with serum creatinine (Cr)
PubDate: Tue, 13 Oct 2015 12:05:31 +000
- The Value of Serum Midkine Level in Diagnosis of Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Abstract: Background and Aim. Identification of sensitive biomarkers to improve early diagnosis of HCC is needed. We aimed to evaluate serum midkine (MDK) as a biomarker for HCC diagnosis. Patients and Methods. 40 HCCs, 30 liver cirrhosis patients, and 30 healthy subjects were enrolled. Serum MDK using ELISA was measured in all included subjects. Results. Serum MDK was significantly elevated in HCC group compared to cirrhotic and healthy control groups (0.625 versus 0.15 and 0.125 ng/mL), respectively. No significant association was found between MDK and either BCLC stage, tumor diameter, tumor number, or AFP level. Receiver operating characteristic curve showed that best cutoff for MDK and AFP was 0.387 and 88.5 ng/mL, respectively. Area under the curve of MDK was significantly larger than that of AFP (0.941 versus 0.671). The sensitivity of MDK at 0.387 ng/mL for HCC diagnosis was significantly higher than that of AFP at cutoffs 20, 88.5, and 200 ng/mL (92.5 versus 62.5, 40, and 25%), respectively. Sensitivity of MDK reached 93.3% in patients with AFP
PubDate: Sun, 08 Feb 2015 06:30:23 +000
- Mystery of Hepatitis E Virus: Recent Advances in Its Diagnosis and
Abstract: Mysterious aspects of the long presumed to be well-known hepatitis E virus (HEV) have recently surfaced that distinguish it from other hepatotropic viruses. It is a cause of chronic hepatitis in immunosuppressed patients. It has human to human transmission through blood and mantains high seroprevalence in blood donors. HEV has also been found to occur more frequently in the West in those who without a history of travel to endemic countries. It has varied extra hepatic manifestations, and has multiple non-human reservoirs including pigs, and rats. Considering these recent discoveries, it appears odd that HEV is not sought more frequently when working up acute and chronic hepatitis patients. The disease is particularly severe among pregnant women and has a high attack rate in young adults. What adds to its ambiguity is the absence of a well-established diagnostic criteria for its detection and that there is no specific antiviral drug for hepatitis E, except for isolated cases where ribavirin or pegylated interferon alpha has been used with occasional success. This review paper discusses the recent advances in the knowledge of the virus itself, its epidemiology, diagnostic approach and prevention, and the treatment options available.
PubDate: Mon, 19 Jan 2015 12:30:19 +000
- Circulating MicroRNAs in Plasma of Hepatitis B e Antigen Positive Children
Reveal Liver-Specific Target Genes
Abstract: Background and Aim. Hepatitis B e antigen positive (HBeAg-positive) children are at high risk of severe complications such as hepatocellular carcinoma and cirrhosis. Liver damage is caused by the host immune response to infected hepatocytes, and we hypothesise that specific microRNAs play a role in this complex interaction between virus and host. The study aimed to identify microRNAs with aberrant plasma expressions in HBeAg-positive children and with liver-specific target genes. Methods. By revisiting our previous screen of microRNA plasma levels in HBeAg-positive and HBeAg-negative children with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) and in healthy controls, candidate microRNAs with aberrant plasma expressions in HBeAg-positive children were identified. MicroRNAs targeting liver-specific genes were selected based on bioinformatics analysis and validated by qRT-PCR using plasma samples from 34 HBeAg-positive, 26 HBeAg-negative, and 60 healthy control children. Results. Thirteen microRNAs showed aberrant plasma expressions in HBeAg-positive children and targeted liver-specific genes. In particular, three microRNAs were upregulated and one was downregulated in HBeAg-positive children compared to HBeAg-negative and healthy control children, which showed equal levels. Conclusion. The identified microRNAs might impact the progression of CHB in children. Functional studies are warranted, however, to elucidate the microRNAs’ role in the immunopathogenesis of childhood CHB.
PubDate: Wed, 17 Dec 2014 07:45:33 +000
- E. coli Induced Experimental Model of Primary Biliary Cirrhosis: At Last
Abstract: Recurrent urinary tract infections (UTI) have been considered potential triggers of primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC), an autoimmune cholestatic liver disease characterised by progressive destruction of intrahepatic bile ducts. Additional support for the link made between PBC and UTI was based on early observations of recurrent episodes of bacteriuria in female patients with PBC. A series of large epidemiological studies demonstrated a strong correlation between recurrent UTI and PBC, initiating a series of studies investigating the role of Escherichia coli (E. coli, the most prevalent organism isolated in women with UTI) as a trigger of PBC. Immunological evidence of B- and T-cell cross-reactive responses implicating PBC-specific autoantigens and E. coli mimics have been clearly demonstrated, adding support to the notion that E. coli is a potential infectious inducer of PBC in susceptible individuals. One of the major limitations in proving the E. coli/PBC association was the lack of reliable E. coli-infected animal models of PBC. This review provides an overview of the evidence linking this infectious agent with PBC and discusses the pros and cons of a recently developed E. coli-infected animal model of PBC.
PubDate: Tue, 16 Dec 2014 11:28:17 +000
- The Mind and Liver Test: A New Approach to the Diagnosis of Minimal
Hepatic Encephalopathy in Resource-Poor Settings
Abstract: Background and Aims. Minimal hepatic encephalopathy (MHE) is diagnosed using neuropsychometric tests or neurophysiological tests that are either inapplicable to illiterate patient population in resource-poor settings or require sophisticated and expensive equipment. The available tests assess discrete domains of mental impairment. Our aim was (a) to design a neuropsychometric test that measures all domains of mental impairment in MHE using one metric; (b) to evaluate its sensitivity, specificity, and reproducibility. Methods. The mind and liver test (MALT), a psychometric test assessing cognition, memory, and psychometric impairment, each on a scale of 20, was designed keeping in mind the requirements of a universal test. 40 cirrhotics and 36 controls were subjected to critical flicker frequency (CFF) and MALT in same sitting. ROC curve was plotted for MALT using CFF as gold standard. Bland-Altman plot was used to find test-retest agreement. Results. CFF values and MALT scores varied significantly between the cases and the controls . MALT was 94% sensitive and 83% specific. Using ROC with CFF as gold standard, the AUC for diagnosis of MHE using MALT score was 0.89. Test-retest agreement was high (ICC = 0.89). Conclusion. In this pilot study, MALT proved to be highly sensitive, specific, inexpensive, and reproducible.
PubDate: Mon, 08 Dec 2014 12:52:14 +000
- IFNL4 ss469415590 Variant Is Associated with Treatment Response in
Japanese HCV Genotype 1 Infected Individuals Treated with IFN-Including
Abstract: Aim. Eradication of hepatitis C virus (HCV) is still challenging even if interferon- (IFN-) free regimens with direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) for HCV-infected individuals are available in clinical practice. IFNL4 is a newly described protein, associated with human antiviral defenses. We investigated whether IFNL4 ss469415590 variant has an effect on the prediction of treatment response in HCV-infected patients treated with IFN-including regimens. Patients and Methods. In all, 185 patients infected with HCV genotype 1 treated with peg-IFN plus ribavirin, with or without telaprevir, were genotyped for IFNL4 ss469415590. We retrospectively investigated whether the role of IFNL4 ss469415590 variant and other factors could predict sustained virological response (SVR) in Japanese patients infected with HCV genotype 1. Results. There were 65.7%, 31.5%, and 2.8% patients in the IFNL4 ss469415590 TT/TT, TT/-G, and -G/-G groups, respectively. SVR rates were 82.1% or 49.3% in patients treated with peg-IFN plus ribavirin with or without telaprevir, respectively. IFNL4 ss469415590 variant and HCV viral loads or IFNL4 ss469415590 variant and early virological response were better predictors of SVR in patients treated with peg-IFN plus ribavirin with or without telaprevir, respectively. Conclusion. In the era of DAAs, measurement of IFNL4 ss469415590 variant could help the prediction of SVR in Japanese HCV genotype 1 infected individuals treated with IFN-including regimens.
PubDate: Mon, 08 Dec 2014 12:36:41 +000
- Central Portalization Correlates with Fibrosis but Not with Risk Factors
for Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis in Steatotic Chronic Hepatitis C
Abstract: Concomitant steatosis in chronic hepatitis C is associated with fibrosis and unfavorable treatment outcome. Central zone injury in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) manifests as central portalization, with centrizonal microvessels and ductular reaction. We investigated whether central portalization in steatotic HCV biopsies would identify patients with metabolic risk factors for NASH. Liver biopsies with chronic hepatitis C and >10% steatosis were evaluated for the degree of steatosis, zonation of steatosis, fibrosis, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) activity score. The presence of centrizonal microvessels, sinusoidal capillarization, ductular reaction, and CK7 positive intermediate-phenotype hepatocytes were evaluated by CD34 and CK7 immunostain. The degree of steatosis and fibrosis showed a positive correlation. Additional positive correlations were noted between centrizonal angiogenesis and NAFLD activity score and central portalization and fibrosis. However, neither central portalization nor zonation of steatosis identified patients with metabolic risk factors for NASH. Therefore, central portalization cannot be used as a surrogate marker to identify patients with metabolic risk factors for NASH in steatotic HCV biopsies. The mechanism of centrizonal injury in steatotic HCV hepatitis is not solely attributable to the metabolic risk factors for NASH.
PubDate: Sun, 30 Nov 2014 00:10:09 +000
- Clinical Features of Adult Patients with Acute Hepatitis B Virus Infection
Progressing to Chronic Infection
Abstract: Background. Information regarding the progression of acute hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection to chronic infection in adults is scarce. Methods. Twenty-five adult patients with acute HBV infection (14 men and 11 women, 18–84 years old), whose clinical features progressed to those of chronic infection (group A) or did not (group B), were studied retrospectively. Results. There were 3 and 22 patients in groups A and B, respectively. Two of the 3 patients of group A lacked the typical symptoms of acute hepatitis. No differences were found between groups with respect to age, sex, or HBV genotypes. However, total bilirubin and alanine aminotransaminase levels were significantly lower in group A. Conclusions. Three of the 25 adult patients with acute HBV infection progressed to chronic infection. Hepatitis was mild in these patients. Patients with mild acute hepatitis B or unapparent HBV infection may have a higher risk of progressing to chronic infection.
PubDate: Thu, 02 Oct 2014 12:49:09 +000
- Fructose Induced Endotoxemia in Pediatric Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Abstract: In preclinical studies of fructose-induced NAFLD, endotoxin appears to play an important role. We retrospectively examined samples from three pediatric cohorts (1) to investigate whether endotoxemia is associated with the presence of hepatic steatosis; (2) to evaluate postprandial endotoxin levels in response to fructose beverage in an acute 24-hour feeding challenge, and (3) to determine the change of fasting endotoxin amounts in a 4-week randomized controlled trial comparing fructose to glucose beverages in NAFLD. We found that adolescents with hepatic steatosis had elevated endotoxin levels compared to obese controls and that the endotoxin level correlated with insulin resistance and several inflammatory cytokines. In a 24-hour feeding study, endotoxin levels in NAFLD adolescents increased after fructose beverages (consumed with meals) as compared to healthy children. Similarly, endotoxin was significantly increased after adolescents consumed fructose beverages for 2 weeks and remained high although not significantly at 4 weeks. In conclusion, these data provide support for the concept of low level endotoxemia contributing to pediatric NAFLD and the possible role of fructose in this process. Further studies are needed to determine if manipulation of the microbiome or other methods of endotoxin reduction would be useful as a therapy for pediatric NAFLD.
PubDate: Sun, 28 Sep 2014 10:23:02 +000
- Cholangiocarcinoma with respect to IgG4 Reaction
Abstract: IgG4 reactions marked by infiltration of IgG4-positive plasma cells in affected organs occur in cancer patients and in patients with IgG4-related diseases. Extrahepatic cholangiocarcinomas including gall bladder cancer are often accompanied by significant IgG4 reactions; these reactions show a negative correlation with CD8-positive cytotoxic T cells, suggesting that the evasion of immune surveillance is associated with cytotoxic T cells. The regulatory cytokine IL-10 may induce IgG4-positive plasma cell differentiation or promote B cell switching to IgG4 in the presence of IL-4. Cholangiocarcinoma cells may function as nonprofessional antigen presenting cells that indirectly induce IgG4 reactions via the IL-10-producing cells and/or these may act as Foxp3-positive and IL-10-producing cells that directly induce IgG4 reactions. Moreover, IgG4-related disease is a high-risk factor for cancer development; IgG4-related sclerosing cholangitis (IgG4-SC) cases associated with cholangiocarcinoma or its precursor lesion biliary intraepithelial neoplasia (BilIN) have been reported. IgG4-positive cell infiltration is an important finding of IgG4-SC but is not a histological hallmark of IgG4-SC. For the diagnosis of IgG4-SC, its differentiation from cholangiocarcinoma remains important.
PubDate: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 00:00:00 +000
- Diagnosis of Spontaneous Bacterial Peritonitis and an In Situ
Hybridization Approach to Detect an “Unidentified” Pathogen
Abstract: Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) is a frequent and severe complication in cirrhotic patients with ascites. Although identifying the pathogen(s) plays a major role in the management of infectious diseases, ascitic fluid cultures often show negative results in patients with clinical signs and symptoms of SBP, and ascitic fluid cell analyses are the gold standard method for diagnosing SBP. SBP is generally diagnosed based on an increased number of polymorphonuclear neutrophils in the ascitic fluid (250/mm3), and the identification of the causal pathogen may not be given consideration. We newly developed an in situ hybridization (ISH) method to provide early and direct evidence of bacterial infection in ascites in patients with SBP. This paper will review the diagnosis of SBP, including our novel approach with ISH method to detect bacterial DNA in SBP ascitic fluid.
PubDate: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 00:00:00 +000