Cholesterol gallstone disease.

Department of Internal and Public Medicine, University Medical School, Bari, Italy.
The Lancet (Impact Factor: 39.21). 08/2006; 368(9531):230-9. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(06)69044-2
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT With a prevalence of 10-15% in adults in Europe and the USA, gallstones are the most common digestive disease needing admission to hospital in the West. The interplay between interprandial and postprandial physiological responses to endogenous and dietary lipids underscores the importance of coordinated hepatobiliary and gastrointestinal functions to prevent crystallisation and precipitation of excess biliary cholesterol. Indeed, identifying the metabolic and transcriptional pathways that drive the regulation of biliary lipid secretion has been a major achievement in the field. We highlight scientific advances in protein and gene regulation of cholesterol absorption, synthesis, and catabolism, and biliary lipid secretion with respect to the pathogenesis of cholesterol gallstone disease. We discuss the physical-chemical mechanisms of gallstone formation in bile and the active role of the gallbladder and the intestine. We also discuss gaps in our knowledge of the pathogenesis of gallstone formation and the potential for gene targeting in therapy.

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    ABSTRACT: Gallstones are the most common biliary pathology. The prevalence of gallstones in the United States is around d 10% to 15 % and in Europe around 18.5%. Although the data from
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    ABSTRACT: Recent studies have found that certain urinary proteins can efficiently inhibit stone formation. These discoveries are significant for developing effective therapies for stone disease, but the inhibition mechanism of crystallization remains elusive. In the present study, polyaspartic acid (PASP) was employed as a model peptide to investigate the effect of urinary proteins on the crystallization and morphological evolution of struvite. The results demonstrate that selective adsorption/binding of PASP onto the {010} and {101} faces of struvite crystals results in arrowhead-shaped morphology, which further evolves into X-shaped and unusual tabular structures with time. Noticeably, these morphologies are reminiscent of biogenic struvite morphology. Concentration-dependent experiments show that PASP can inhibit struvite growth and the inhibitory capacity increases with increasing PASP concentration, whereas aspartic acid monomers do not show a significant effect. Considering that PASP is a structural and functional analogue of the subdomains of aspartic acid-rich proteins, our results reveal that aspartic acid-rich proteins play a key role in regulating biogenic struvite morphology, and aspartic acid residues contribute to the inhibitory capacity of urinary proteins. The potential implications of PASP for developing therapeutic agents for urinary stone disease is also discussed.
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