Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Clinical Trial Of "Artificial Liver" Uses Albumin Dialysis

Date:
August 2, 2001
Source:
Northwestern University
Summary:
Adding albumin to a dialysis solution may help patients wake up faster from coma due to chronic liver failure, according to researchers at Northwestern University Medical School.

CHICAGO --- Adding albumin to a dialysis solution may help patients wake up faster from coma due to chronic liver failure, according to researchers at Northwestern University Medical School.

The Northwestern scientists are conducting a controlled study of a new "artificial liver" that uses albumin -- a protein that is produced naturally by the body and is a major component of human blood plasma -- to remove toxins from the blood of patients in chronic liver failure who are comatose.

The new "artificial liver" is called a molecular adsorbent recirculation system, or MARS. With MARS, toxic substances in the blood bind to the albumin, cross into the dialysis solution and are therefore removed from the body. The Northwestern study will assess whether patients in hepatic coma exposed to MARS will wake up sooner.

Unlike other "artificial" or "bioartificial" liver devices, the MARS involves no exposure to animal or human material. Additional advantages may be lower cost and easy applicability of the technology.

"The promise of "bioartificial" systems -- the ability to replace the capacity of the liver to produce new proteins -- has not yet been met. The current focus of all these systems, artificial and bioartificial, is to improve the ability to clear the blood of toxins that accumulate in liver disease," said Andres Blei, M.D., professor of medicine and principal investigator for the MARS study at Northwestern. Blei is chief of the division of hepatology at the Medical School and at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Currently, over 12,000 patients are waiting for a liver transplant, but only 4,000 transplants are done annually. Up to 20 percent of the patients on the liver transplant waiting list die.

"Thus, there is an urgent need to develop systems that will support patients with chronic liver disease in advance stages of decompensation," Blei said.

Blei said that if use of MARS yields positive results, the scope of the study may be expanded to include the effect of MARS on other complications of chronic liver disease, such as renal failure and pruritus (itching).

To qualify for the MARS study, patients must have cirrhosis of the liver and stage III or IV encephalopathy (coma), no evidence of active hemorrhage and a family member able to provide consent. Because this is a controlled clinical study, half of the patients will be placed on the MARS device and half will not.

Other sites for the MARS study include the University of California San Diego, the University of Michigan and Columbia University.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Northwestern University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Northwestern University. "Clinical Trial Of "Artificial Liver" Uses Albumin Dialysis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 August 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010801082333.htm>.
Northwestern University. (2001, August 2). Clinical Trial Of "Artificial Liver" Uses Albumin Dialysis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010801082333.htm
Northwestern University. "Clinical Trial Of "Artificial Liver" Uses Albumin Dialysis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010801082333.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) Sierra Leone residents remained in lockdown on Saturday as part of a massive effort to confine millions of people to their homes in a bid to stem the biggest Ebola outbreak in history. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins