Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Northwestern Memorial Researchers Aim To Find Answer To Halting The Progression Of Fatty Liver

Date:
June 6, 2005
Source:
Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Summary:
Currently, no medical treatment exists for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), inflammation of the liver associated with the accumulation of fat in the liver. NASH can result in scarring of the liver in up to 40 percent of people with the disease and cirrhosis in approximately 25 percent of people with NASH. Researchers at Northwestern Memorial Hospital have launched a clinical trial to see if Pentoxifylline can stop the progression of NASH.

Currently, no medical treatment exists for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), inflammation of the liver associated with the accumulation of fat in the liver. Recent studies indicate that NASH can result in scarring of the liver in up to 40 percent of people with the disease and cirrhosis (irreversible, advanced scarring of the liver) in approximately 25 percent of people with NASH. Researchers at Northwestern Memorial Hospital have launched a clinical trial to see if Pentoxifylline, a drug that has shown success decreasing inflammation of the liver in people with alcohol-related liver disease, can stop the progression of NASH.

"NASH is widespread and the number of cases is rising every year -- it's truly become an epidemic in this country," says Mary Rinella, MD, a hepatologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital who is the lead investigator of the trial and an assistant professor of Medicine at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. "Currently, we don't have anything to offer patients except to advise them to lose weight and change their diet, so many of these patients are ending up on liver transplant waiting lists. We need therapies that help keep people from reaching that point."

In developed countries, the overall prevalence of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is estimated to be approximately 20 percent of the population, with about 3 percent having NASH. NASH differs from the NAFLD, the simple accumulation of fat in the liver, in that the inflammation causes damage to the liver cells while simple fatty liver probably does not. NASH typically occurs in middle-aged, overweight, and often diabetic patients who do not drink alcohol. It has also been connected with rapid weight loss, or in women taking hormones. "Clinical studies and basic research on NAFLD are still in their infancy as compared to other common liver diseases, such as alcoholic liver disease and hepatitis C," says Dr. Rinella. "We didn't really even start understanding the gravity of this problem in our patients until about 10 years ago."

NASH is most often discovered during routine laboratory testing. Additional tests help confirm the presence of NASH and rule out other types of liver disease.

The trial, which aims to enroll 50 participants, is sponsored by Northwestern University's Department of Hepatology with support from the NIH-funded General Clinical Research Center. Northwestern Memorial is the only site for the research. The study is blinded and placebo-controlled, with two-thirds of participants receiving Pentoxifylline.

For more information about enrolling in the study, please call Northwestern Memorial's physician referral line at 312-926-8400.



Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Northwestern Memorial Hospital. "Northwestern Memorial Researchers Aim To Find Answer To Halting The Progression Of Fatty Liver." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 June 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050605234439.htm>.
Northwestern Memorial Hospital. (2005, June 6). Northwestern Memorial Researchers Aim To Find Answer To Halting The Progression Of Fatty Liver. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050605234439.htm
Northwestern Memorial Hospital. "Northwestern Memorial Researchers Aim To Find Answer To Halting The Progression Of Fatty Liver." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050605234439.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. 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