Liver Disease

Liver disease is any condition that causes liver inflammation or tissue damage and affects liver function. The liver is the largest organ in the body and performs a number of vital functions such as converting nutrients derived from food into essential blood components, storing vitamins and minerals, regulating blood clotting, producing  proteins, enzymes, maintaining hormone balances, and metabolizing and detoxifying substances that would otherwise be harmful to the body. The liver also produces bile, a liquid that helps with digestion.


A moderate amount of alcohol is broken down by the liver without any damage. However, when drinking excessively, the liver can transform alcohol into fat and accumulate these lipids and become injured or seriously damaged. Liver injury can be determined by histology, abdominal ultrasonography and by testing the blood concentration of certain enzymes, such as gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT), aspartate amino-transferase (AST), and alanine amino-transferase (ALT).

On the other hand, some studies suggest that moderate and regular consumption of alcoholic beverages may play a protective role against fatty liver disease, the exact mechanisms involved have not yet been clearly established.

The above summary provides an overview of the topic, for more details and specific questions, please refer to the articles in the database.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common cause of chronic liver disease worldwide, with a prevalence of 25-30%. Since its first description in 1980, NAFLD has been conceived as a different entity from alcohol-related fatty liver disease (ALD), despite that, both diseases have an overlap in the pathophysiology, share genetic-epigenetic factors, and frequently coexist. Both entities are characterized by a broad spectrum of histological features ranging from isolated steatosis to steatohepatitis and cirrhosis. Distinction between NAFLD and ALD is based on the amount of consumed alcohol, which has been arbitrarily established. In this context, a proposal of positive criteria for NAFLD diagnosis not considering exclusion of alcohol consumption as a prerequisite criterion for diagnosis had emerged, recognizing the…
OBJECTIVES: To systematically summarize the risk relationship between different levels of alcohol consumption and incidence of liver cirrhosis. METHODS: MEDLINE and Embase were searched up to March 6, 2019, to identify case-control and cohort studies with sex-specific results and more than 2 categories of drinking in relation to the incidence of liver cirrhosis. Study characteristics were extracted and random-effects meta-analyses and meta-regressions were conducted. RESULTS: A total of 7 cohort studies and 2 case-control studies met the inclusion criteria, providing data from 2,629,272 participants with 5,505 cases of liver cirrhosis. There was no increased risk for occasional drinkers. Consumption of one drink per day in comparison to long-term abstainers showed an increased risk for liver cirrhosis in women, but not…
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the hepatic consequence of metabolic syndrome, which often also includes obesity, diabetes, and dyslipidemia. The connection between gut microbiota (GM) and NAFLD has attracted significant attention in recent years. Data has shown that GM affects hepatic lipid metabolism and influences the balance between pro/anti-inflammatory effectors in the liver. Although studies reveal the association between GM dysbiosis and NAFLD, decoding the mechanisms of gut dysbiosis resulting in NAFLD remains challenging. The potential pathophysiology that links GM dysbiosis to NAFLD can be summarized as: (1) disrupting the balance between energy harvest and expenditure, (2) promoting hepatic inflammation (impairing intestinal integrity, facilitating endotoxemia, and initiating inflammatory cascades with cytokines releasing), and (3) altered biochemistry metabolism and GM-related…
BACKGROUND: Alcohol-related liver disease is the leading indication for liver transplantation in the USA. After remaining stable for over three decades, the number of deaths due to alcohol-related liver disease has been increasing as a result of increased high-risk drinking. We aimed to project trends in alcohol-related cirrhosis and deaths in the USA up to 2040 and assess the effect of potential changes in alcohol consumption on those trends. METHODS: In this modelling study, we developed a multicohort state-transition (Markov) model of high-risk alcohol drinking patterns and alcohol-related liver disease in high-risk drinking populations born in 1900-2016 in the USA projected up to 2040. We used data from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions, National Institute of…
BACKGROUND: Favorable association between modest alcohol consumption and cardiovascular disease had been reported in general population, however, whether observed benefit extend to men with established fatty liver disease remains unknown. METHODS: Cross-sectional study of 10,581 consecutive male participants aged 30 years or older undergoing abdominal ultrasonography and carotid artery ultrasonography were screened. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) was diagnosed with ultrasonography and exclusion of secondary causes for fat accumulation or other causes of chronic liver disease. Modest alcohol use was defined as consumption of less than 20 g of alcohol per day. RESULTS: There were total 2280 men diagnosed with fatty liver, and the mean age was 51.8 years old. Among them, 1797 were modest alcohol drinkers. The prevalence of…
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