How Do Lipids Affect Liver Disease?

Changes in lipid intake or metabolism can affect development of liver injury and fibrosis, according to two studies in mice published in the January issue of Gastroenterology. The liver is an important site of energy production and lipid metabolism. However, accumulation of excess fat in the liver promotes development of fibrosis, cirrhosis

Read more

Can We Treat Chronic HCV Infection Without Interferon?

A potent combination of 2 drugs that directly target the hepatitis C virus (HCV) is effective in patients with chronic infection, and doesn’t require interferon therapy, according to an article in the December issue of Gastroenterology. Patients infected with HCV genotype-1 are usually treated with peginterferon and ribavirin, but approximately

Read more

As Incidence of HCV Infection Increases, a New Mouse Model to Study

The incidence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and its complications—hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and cirrhosis—are increasing, according to Fasiha Kanwal et al. Fortunately, a new mouse model has been created to study disease progression and treatment, as described by Michael Washburn et al. These findings were reported in separate articles

Read more

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

Read more

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.

Read more