Liver Disease / Hepatitis News

Treating Liver Cancer With Antisense Oligonucleotide

A new study shows that it is possible to selectively target and block a particular microRNA that is important in liver cancer. The finding might offer a new therapy for this malignancy, which kills an estimated 549,000 people worldwide annually.

The animal study, by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC - James) and at Mayo Clinic, focused on microRNA-221 (miR-221), a molecule that is consistently present at abnormally high levels in liver cancer.

Increase In Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis Spurred By Obesity And Diabetes Epidemics

Junk FoodNonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) occurs when fat builds up in the liver. This accumulation of fat damages the liver and leads to cirrhosis. NASH is rapidly increasing in the U.S. mainly related to the epidemics of obesity and diabetes. As a result, the proportion of liver transplantations performed for NASH cirrhosis rose dramatically from roughly 1% in 1997-2003 to more than 7% in 2010. However, according to new research published in Liver Transplantation, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, post-transplantation survival for NASH patients is excellent, with one year survival rates near 88%.

Agent Responsible For Protection Against Early Stages Of Atherosclerosis Identified

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have identified for the first time the A2b adenosine receptor (A2bAR) as a possible new therapeutic target against atherosclerosis resulting from a diet high in fat and cholesterol. The findings, which appear on-line in Circulation, may have significant public health implications.

Adenosine is a metabolite produced naturally by cells at low levels, and at higher levels during exercise or stress. Adenosine binds to and activates cell surface receptors, one of which is the A2bAR. Previous studies have described the A2bAR as anti-inflammatory and protective against kidney ischemia, cardiac reperfusion injury and restenosis, typically via bone marrow cell signals.


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