Therapeutic efficacy of decreased nitrite production by bezafibrate in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis.
ABSTRACT The therapeutic efficacy of bezafibrate, a hypolipidemic drug, has been shown in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) in some pilot studies; however, little is known regarding the mechanism of action of bezafibrate in PBC. This study was conducted to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy, as well as to gain insight about the possible mechanism of action, of bezafibrate in PBC.
Sixteen patients with PBC were administered with bezafibrate (400 mg/day) either with (n = 10) or without ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA; n = 6). The peripheral blood of these patients was collected before and at different times after therapy commencement, and antigen-presenting dendritic cells (DCs) were then cultured. The DCs were enriched and cultured with Staphylococcus aureus Cowan strain-1 for 48 h to evaluate their capacity to produce nitrite.
One month after the start of bezafibrate therapy, the serum levels of alkaline phosphatase (P = 0.0005), gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase (P = 0.0006), total cholesterol (P = 0.0072), and immunoglobulin M (P = 0.0281) were decreased significantly compared to those before patients started bezafibrate therapy. The levels of nitrite produced by DCs decreased in all patients with PBC within 1 month of commencement of bezafibrate therapy. Moreover, decreased nitrite production by DCs was also seen when nitrite production was evaluated 1 year after the start of bezafibrate therapy.
This study reconfirms the therapeutic efficacy of bezafibrate in patients with PBC, including those with UDCA-resistant PBC. Downregulation of nitrite production by DCs may have some relationship with the therapeutic efficacy of bezafibrate; however, further study will be needed to clarify whether or not the antiinflammatory activity of bezafibrate is mediated through nitrite production.
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ABSTRACT: Cholestatic liver diseases encompass a wide spectrum of disorders with different causes, resulting in impaired bile flow and accumulation of bile acids and other potentially hepatotoxic cholephils. The understanding of the molecular mechanisms of bile formation and cholestasis has recently improved significantly through new insights into nuclear receptor (patho)biology. Nuclear receptors are ligand-activated transcription factors, which act as central players in the regulation of genes responsible for elimination and detoxification of biliary constituents accumulating in cholestasis. They also control other pathophysiologic processes such as inflammation, fibrogenesis, and carcinogenesis involved in the pathogenesis and disease progression of cholestasis liver diseases.Clinics in liver disease 05/2013; 17(2):161-89.
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ABSTRACT: Primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) can lead to end-stage liver disease and death. Ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) treatment can normalize serum liver enzymes in PBC, and such UDCA-responsive patients have a similar life expectancy as age and sex-matched controls. Nearly up to 50% of the patients with PBC, depending on sex and age at diagnosis, show an incomplete biochemical response to UDCA and require additional/alternative treatment. The purpose of this review is to critically evaluate the molecular mechanisms and clinical benefit of fibrate treatment in these patients. Fibrates have anticholestatic, anti-inflammatory, and antifibrotic effects in animal and in-vitro studies. The mechanisms that underlie these effects are complementary, and largely mediated through activation of peroxisome proliferator activated receptors. Fibrate treatment ameliorated liver biochemical tests in UDCA unresponsive patients, either as mono-therapy or in combination with UDCA. These results, however, were obtained in case series and small pilot studies. The results of phase III studies, such as the Bezafibrate in Combination With Ursodeoxycholic Acid in Primary Biliary Cirrhosis (BEZURSO) trial, are currently awaited. A considerable body of observational evidence supports the safety and efficacy of fibrate treatment in PBC patients with an incomplete response to UDCA. These results encourage the evaluation of its effects on liver-related morbidity and mortality in larger clinical trials.Current opinion in gastroenterology 03/2014; · 4.33 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) is a chronic and slowly progressive cholestatic liver disease of autoimmune etiology. A number of questions regarding its etiology are unclear. CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) play a critical role in self-tolerance and, for unknown reasons, their relative number is reduced in PBC patients. B-cell-activating factor (BAFF) is a key survival factor during B-cell maturation and its concentration is increased in peripheral blood of PBC patients. It has been reported that activated B cells inhibit Treg cell proliferation and there are no BAFF receptors on Tregs. Therefore, we speculated that excessive BAFF may result in Treg reduction via B cells. To prove our hypothesis, we isolated Tregs and B cells from PBC and healthy donors. BAFF and IgM concentrations were then analyzed by ELISA and CD40, CD80, CD86, IL-10, and TGF-β expression in B cells and Tregs were measured by flow cytometry. BAFF up-regulated CD40, CD80, CD86, and IgM expression in B cells. However, BAFF had no direct effect on Treg cell apoptosis and cytokine secretion. Nonetheless, we observed that BAFF-activated B cells could induce Treg cell apoptosis and reduce IL-10 and TGF-β expression. We also showed that BAFF-activated CD4+ T cells had no effect on Treg apoptosis. Furthermore, we verified that bezafibrate, a hypolipidemic drug, can inhibit BAFF-induced Treg cell apoptosis. In conclusion, BAFF promotes Treg cell apoptosis and inhibits cytokine production by activating B cells in PBC patients. The results of this study suggest that inhibition of BAFF activation is a strategy for PBC treatment.Brazilian journal of medical and biological research = Revista brasileira de pesquisas medicas e biologicas / Sociedade Brasileira de Biofisica ... [et al.] 05/2013; · 1.08 Impact Factor