Liver/Biliary

Coffee, Beyond Caffeine

Coffee—caffeinated or decaffeinated—protects liver and gastrointestinal cells from toxic compounds, according to Sandra Kalthoff et al. in the November issue of Gastroenterology. In many epidemiology studies, coffee consumption reduced the risk of inflammation, chronic liver diseases, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and other GI disorders. Its mechanisms are unclear, however, because coffee

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Are Biopsies Safe for Patients with Advanced Liver Disease?

Liver biopsies are relatively safe and well tolerated among patients with advanced chronic hepatitis C, based on data from the HALT-C trial.  Liver biopsy analysis provides information for diagnosis and planning of treatment strategies for patients with acute and chronic liver diseases, such as chronic hepatitis C infection. However, biopsies

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Cadaveric Liver Cells for Transplantation?

The only effective treatment for liver failure is transplantation, which is limited by the short supply of organ donors. A study by Laura Erker et al. in the September issue of Gastroenterology reports that liver cells from human cadavers might someday be used for transplantation. Erker et al. showed that

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Marking the Course of Hepatitis B

It is a challenge to monitor the course of chronic hepatitis B. Patients still carry the Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) but have varying levels of viral DNA, HBeAg, and liver inflammation—and remain at risk for developing hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Two papers in this month’s issue of Gastroenterology investigate Hepatitis

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How should we assess quality of cirrhosis care?

Insurance companies and government agencies attempt to assess healthcare quality to develop quality-based reimbursement models. It is a challenge to define and measure quality of care, however, especially for complex, chronic diseases such as cirrhosis. Two studies in the August issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (CGH) identify tools for

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Which Roads Lead to NASH?

Which Roads Lead to NASH? The progressive liver disease nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is mediated by an innate immune response in the liver that causes tissue damage and fibrosis. The innate immune system protects against invading pathogens, but it’s not clear how it becomes activated in livers of patients with NASH.

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Welcome to The AGA Journals Blog

Welcome to “The AGA Journals Blog”—a forum for discussion of the latest discoveries in the fields of gastroenterology and hepatology. Each week we will comment on a new article from the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) journals Gastroenterology and Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (CGH). The goals for the blog are two-fold:

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