[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recurrent HCV infection following liver transplantation can lead to accelerated allograft injury that is difficult to treat with interferon. The aim of this study is to describe the first ever use of an interferon-free, all oral regimen in a liver transplant recipient with severe recurrent HCV. A 54-year-old male with HCV genotype 1b developed severe cholestatic HCV at 6 months posttransplant with ascites, AST 503 IU/mL, alkaline phosphatase of 298 IU/mL, HCV RNA of 12 000 000 IU/mL, and histological cholestasis with pericellular fibrosis. Sofosbuvir, an HCV polymerase inhibitor (400 mg/day), and daclatasvir, an HCV NS5A replication complex inhibitor (60 mg/day), were co-administered for 24 weeks. Within 4 weeks of initiating treatment, serum HCV RNA levels became undetectable and liver biochemistries normalized with concomitant resolution of ascites. The patient achieved a sustained virological response with undetectable HCV RNA at 9 months posttreatment. During and following treatment, the daily dose and blood level of tacrolimus remained stable and unchanged. The rapid and sustained suppression of HCV replication in this liver transplant recipient provides great promise for the use of combination oral antiviral regimens in other immunosuppressed and interferon refractory HCV patients.
American Journal of Transplantation 04/2013; · 6.19 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Steroids are a mainstay of treatment in orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) and are associated with significant morbidity. This trial was conducted to assess the efficacy of steroids avoidance.
Patients undergoing OLT between June 2002 and April 2005 were entered into a prospective, randomized trial of complete steroids avoidance and followed until November 2011. Recipients received either standard therapy (n = 50) or complete steroids avoidance (n = 50). Analyses were performed on an intention-to-treat basis. The mean follow-up of all recipients was 2095 ± 117 days. Sixteen (32%) recipients randomized to the steroids avoidance group ultimately received steroids for clinical indications.
Incidences of diabetes and hypertension prior to or after OLT were similar in both groups, as was the incidence of rejection. Patient and graft survival rates at 1, 3 and 5 years were lower in the steroids avoidance group than in the standard therapy group (patient survival: 1-year, 80% versus 86%; 3-year, 68% versus 76%; 5-year, 60% versus 72%; graft survival: 1-year, 76% versus 76%; 3-year, 64% versus 74%; 5-year, 56% versus 72%), but the differences were not statistically different.
Complete steroids avoidance provides liver transplant recipients with minimal benefit and appears to result in a concerning trend towards decreased graft and recipient survival. The present data support the use of at least a short course of steroids after liver transplantation.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND AND AIMS:: Idiosyncratic drug-induced liver injury (DILI) can be caused by intravenous (IV) medications, but the characteristics of DILI caused by these agents are not known. The aim of this study is to characterize the clinical features of subjects with suspected DILI associated with IV agents enrolled into the Drug Induced Liver Injury Network Prospective Study. METHODS:: Subjects with suspected DILI due to IV medications with probable, highly likely, or definite casuality scores were eligible. RESULTS:: Between 2004 and October 2010, 542 cases of DILI were adjudicated for causality, of which 32 were eligible for inclusion in this study. DILI was ascribed to a single IV agent in 27 subjects, and to multiple IV agents in 5 subjects. Antimicrobial agents (62%), antineoplastic agents (16%), and phenytoin (9%) were most commonly implicated. The pattern of liver injury was hepatocellular in 30%, mixed in 33%, and cholestatic in 37%. The peak alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (AlkP), and total bilirubin were 686±915 U/L, 623±563 U/L, and 8.7±10.3 mg/dL, respectively. The duration for ≥50% improvement from peak ALT, AlkP, and total bilirubin were 25±37, 59±69, and 20±28 days, respectively. DILI severity was mild in 37%, moderate in 47%, severe in 13%, and fatal in 3%, with no liver transplantation. Their causality was adjudicated as definite in 5, very likely in 17, and probable in 10 subjects. The frequency of chronic DILI was 13%. CONCLUSIONS:: Antimicrobial and antineoplastic agents are the most common IV agents to cause DILI. DILI ascribed to IV agents is relatively infrequent, but its outcomes are similar to those of the overall Drug Induced Liver Injury Network cohort.
Journal of clinical gastroenterology 02/2013; · 2.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: AIMS: The aim of this study was to describe the presenting features and outcomes of consecutive patients with liver injury attributed to interferon beta. METHODS: The presenting features of eight subjects with clinically apparent liver injury attributed to interferon beta enrolled in the U.S. Drug-Induced Liver Injury Network (DILIN) prospective registry between 2004 and 2010 were reviewed and compared to 11 published reports of symptomatic hepatotoxicity. RESULTS: All eight of the DILIN patients were women, 75 % were Caucasian and the mean age was 49 years. Most subjects presented with an acute hepatocellular injury pattern and mean serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels were 725 ± 593 U/L. The median duration of interferon beta use before injury onset was 462 days, and four patients had been treated for more than a year. No patient had detectable antinuclear or smooth muscle antibodies. One patient died of acute liver failure and the remaining patients usually recovered within 2-3 months. Causality assessment scored three cases as definite, three highly likely, one probable and one possible. Eleven additional published cases were all women, mean age was 40 years, mean ALT at onset 840 U/L, and 7 (63 %) had autoantibodies. Liver histology in three cases from DILIN and nine from the literature commented upon centrilobular (zone 3) necrosis and infiltrates with lymphocytes and plasma cells. CONCLUSIONS: Interferon beta hepatotoxicity occurs mostly in women and has a variable, but often prolonged time to onset. Most patients have self-limited acute hepatocellular liver injury but several have required liver transplantation or died of acute liver failure. Liver histology available in three cases demonstrated zone 3 necrosis and autoimmune features suggestive of an immunologic basis to this adverse drug reaction.
Digestive Diseases and Sciences 02/2013; · 2.26 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND & AIMS: Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α antagonists have been associated with drug-induced liver injury (DILI). We reviewed cases of the DILI in the US to identify those associated with use of TNFα antagonists. METHODS: We searched the US DILI Network (DILIN) database, from 2003 to 2011, for cases associated with TNFα antagonists. Mean Roussel-Uclaf Causality Assessment Method scores were calculated. A DILIN severity score was assigned according to a previously published scale, and we identified 6 subjects likely to have DILI associated with use of TNFα antagonists. We also searched PubMed for articles published in since April 2011 articles reporting hepatotoxicity from TNFα antagonists, identifying 28 additional cases suitable for analysis. RESULTS: The drugs presumed to have caused DILI were infliximab (n=26), etanercept (n=4), and adalimumab (n=4). The anti-TNFα agent was the probable cause of 12 cases of DILI (35%), a very likely cause for 21 (62%), and a definite cause for 1 (3%). Median latency was 13 weeks (range 2-104); however 7 cases (20%) had latency periods longer than 24 weeks. Twenty-two of 33 subjects who underwent serologic analysis (67%) tested positive for anti-nuclear and/or smooth muscle antibodies. Of these 22, 17 underwent liver biopsy: 15 subjects had clear features of autoimmunity. The 22 subjects with autoimmune features had longer median latency (16 vs 10 weeks), and higher peak levels of alanine aminotransferase (784 vs 528 U/L) than the 12 without such features. There was 1 case of severe cholestasis. Liver injury resolved after drug use was discontinued for all but 1 subject, and 12 received corticosteroid therapy. No deaths were attributed to liver injury, although 1 patient with pre-existing cirrhosis required liver transplantation. CONCLUSIONS: Based on analysis of the US DILIN, different TNFα antagonists can cause acute liver injury. The drugs most frequently cause autoimmunity and hepatocellular injury, but mixed non-autoimmune patterns and cholestasis also occur. Liver damage usually resolves following drug discontinuation, although some patients might benefit from a course of corticosteroids.
Clinical gastroenterology and hepatology: the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association 01/2013; · 5.64 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Drug-induced liver injury (DILI) is a serious adverse drug event that is suspected to have a heritable component. We carried out a genome-wide association study of 783 individuals of European ancestry who experienced DILI due to more than 200 implicated drugs. METHODS: DILI patients from the US-based Drug-Induced Liver Injury Network (n=401) and three international registries (n=382) were genotyped with the Illumina 1Mduo BeadChip and compared with population controls (n=3001). Potential associations were tested in 307 independent Drug-Induced Liver Injury Network cases. RESULTS: After accounting for known major histocompatibility complex risk alleles for flucloxacillin-DILI and amoxicillin/clavulanate-DILI, there were no genome-wide significant associations, including in the major histocompatibility complex region. Stratification of DILI cases according to clinical phenotypes (injury type, latency, age of onset) also did not show significant associations. An analysis of hepatocellular DILI (n=285) restricted to 193 single-nucleotide polymorphisms previously associated with autoimmune disease showed a trend association for rs7574865, in the vicinity of signal transducer and activator of transcription 4 (STAT4) (P=4.5×10). This association was replicated in an independent cohort of 168 hepatocellular DILI cases (P=0.011 and 1.5×10 for combined cohorts). No significant associations were found with stratification by other clinical or demographic variables. CONCLUSION: Although not significant at the genome-wide level, the association between hepatocellular DILI and STAT4 is consistent with the emerging role of the immune system in DILI. However, the lack of genome-wide association study findings supports the idea that strong genetic determinants of DILI may be largely drug-specific or may reflect rare genetic variations, which were not assessed in our study.
Pharmacogenetics and Genomics 09/2012; 22(11):784-795. · 3.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Flavocoxid is a prescription medical food that is used to treat osteoarthritis. It is a proprietary blend of 2 flavonoids, baicalin and catechins, which are derived from the botanicals Scutellaria baicalensis and Acacia catechu, respectively.
To describe characteristics of patients with acute liver injury suspected of being caused by flavocoxid.
Drug-Induced Liver Injury Network Prospective Study ongoing at multiple academic medical centers since 2004.
Four adults with liver injury.
Clinical characteristics, liver biochemistry values, and outcomes.
Among 877 patients enrolled in the prospective study, 4 had liver injury suspected to have been caused by flavocoxid. All were women; ages ranged from 57 to 68 years. All developed symptoms and signs of liver injury within 1 to 3 months after initiating flavocoxid. Liver injury was characterized by marked elevations in levels of alanine aminotransferase (mean peak, 1268 U/L; range, 741 to 1540 U/L), alkaline phosphatase (mean peak, 510 U/L; range, 286 to 770 U/L), and serum bilirubin (mean peak, 160.7 µmol/L [9.4 mg/dL]; range, 34.2 to 356 µmol/L [2.0 to 20.8 mg/dL]). Liver biochemistry values decreased to the normal range within 3 to 12 weeks after flavocoxid was stopped, and all patients recovered without experiencing acute liver failure or chronic liver injury. Causality was adjudicated as highly likely in 3 patients and as possible in 1 patient.
The frequency and mechanism of liver injury could not be assessed.
Flavocoxid can cause clinically significant liver injury, which seems to resolve within weeks after cessation.
Annals of internal medicine 06/2012; 156(12):857-60, W297-300. · 13.98 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A recurrent hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection after liver transplantation (LT) can lead to accelerated allograft injury and fibrosis. The aim of this article is to report the first ever use of daclatasvir (DCV; also known as BMS-790052), a potent orally administered nonstructural 5A replication complex inhibitor, in combination with peginterferon α (PEG-IFNα) and ribavirin in an LT recipient. A 49-year-old female developed a severe recurrent HCV genotype 1b infection 4 months after transplantation with severe cholestasis on biopsy, an HCV RNA level of 10,000,000 IU/mL, an alkaline phosphatase level of 1525 IU/mL, and a total bilirubin level of 8.4 mg/dL. Despite partial virological suppression with PEG-IFNα and ribavirin, progressive allograft failure ensued and culminated in retransplantation at 9 months. Three months after the second transplant, DCV (20 mg/day), PEG-IFNα2a (180 μg/week), and ribavirin (800 mg/day) were prescribed for early recurrent cholestatic HCV. Serum HCV RNA became undetectable at week 3 of treatment and remained undetectable during 24 weeks of triple therapy and during the posttreatment follow-up. DCV was well tolerated, and the trough drug levels were within the targeted range throughout the treatment. The cyclosporine trough levels were also stable during and after therapy. In conclusion, the lack of anticipated drug-drug interactions between DCV and calcineurin inhibitors and the potent antiviral efficacy of DCV make this agent (in combination with PEG-IFN and ribavirin) an attractive antiviral regimen worthy of further study in LT recipients with recurrent HCV.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To evaluate T cell immunity in advanced liver disease, antigen-specific lymphoproliferative (LP) responses were prospectively studied in the context of the Hepatitis C Antiviral Long-term Treatment against Cirrhosis trial. Peripheral blood responses to hepatitis C virus (HCV), tetanus and Candida protein antigens were measured at baseline, month 12 (M12), M24, M36 and M48 in 186 patients randomized to either low-dose peginterferon-alfa-2a (PEG-IFN) only or observation. Liver histology was evaluated at baseline, M24 and M48. Patients with cirrhosis (Ishak 5-6) were less likely to have positive LP responses to HCV at baseline than patients with fibrosis (15%vs 29%, P = 0.03) and had lower levels of HCV c100 responses at baseline, M24 and M48 (P = 0.11, P = 0.05, P = 0.02, respectively). For 97 patients with complete longitudinal data, the frequency of positive LP responses to HCV, tetanus and Candida antigens declined over time (P < 0.003), and the slope of this decline was greater in the PEG-IFN treatment group than the observation group (P < 0.02). Lower levels of tetanus LP responses were associated with fibrosis progression and clinical outcomes (P = 0.009). Poorer CD4+ T cell proliferative function was associated with more advanced liver disease in chronic hepatitis C and may be further affected by long-term PEG-IFN treatment.
Journal of Viral Hepatitis 06/2012; 19(6):404-13. · 3.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Medication adherence is important for the success of nucleos(t)ide analogue (NUC) treatment for chronic hepatitis B. The aims of this study were to determine adherence to NUCs and factors associated with NUC adherence and to correlate NUC adherence with the occurrence of virological breakthroughs in patients with chronic hepatitis B. Consecutive patients with chronic hepatitis B receiving NUC were asked to complete a survey every 3 months. Adherence was also assessed by healthcare providers in the clinic. Adherence rate was defined as the per cent of days the patients took their hepatitis B virus medications during the last 30 days. A total of 111 patients were studied. The mean age was 47.7 years, 73.9% were men, 57.7% were Asian, 42.3% had postgraduate education and 80% had private insurance. Sixty-nine (74.1%) patients reported 100% adherence in the survey, while 78 (83.9%) reported 100% adherence to their healthcare providers. Patients with 100% adherence based on the survey were older (P = 0.02), more likely to be men (P = 0.006), and had higher annual household income (P = 0.04) than those with <100% adherence. In the 80 patients who completed three surveys, viral breakthrough was observed in 1/46 (2.2%) with 100% adherence on all three surveys, 1/18 (5.6%) with <100% adherence on one survey and 3/16 (18.8%) with <100% adherence on ≥2 surveys, (P = 0.06). In conclusion, adherence to NUC therapy in our patients with chronic hepatitis B was high but self-reporting of adherence to healthcare providers may be inflated. Patients with chronic hepatitis B with better adherence to NUC therapy had a trend towards a lower rate of viral breakthroughs.
Journal of Viral Hepatitis 03/2012; 19(3):205-12. · 3.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Idiosyncratic drug-induced liver injury (DILI) is a complex disorder that is difficult to predict, diagnose and treat.
To describe the global serum proteome of patients with DILI and controls.
A label-free, mass spectrometry-based quantitative proteomic approach was used to explore protein expression in serum samples from 74 DILI patients (collected within 14 days of DILI onset) and 40 controls. A longitudinal analysis was conducted in a subset of 21 DILI patients with available 6-month follow-up serum samples.
Comparison of DILI patients based on pattern, severity and causality assessment of liver injury revealed many differentially expressed priority 1 proteins among groups. Expression of fumarylacetoacetase was correlated with alanine aminotransferase (ALT; r = 0.237; P = 0.047), aspartate aminotransferase (AST; r = 0.389; P = 0.001) and alkaline phosphatase (r = -0.240; P = 0.043), and this was the only protein with significant differential expression when comparing patients with hepatocellular vs. cholestatic or mixed injury. In the longitudinal analysis, expression of 53 priority 1 proteins changed significantly from onset of DILI to 6-month follow-up, and nearly all proteins returned to expression levels comparable to control subjects. Ninety-two serum priority 1 proteins with significant differential expression were identified when comparing the DILI and control groups. Pattern analysis revealed proteins that are components of inflammation, immune system activation and several hepatotoxicity-specific pathways. Apolipoprotein E expression had the greatest power to differentiate DILI patients from controls (89% correct classification; AUROC = 0.97).
This proteomic analysis identified differentially expressed proteins that are components of pathways previously implicated in the pathogenesis of idiosyncratic drug-induced liver injury.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives:We aimed to understand and improve patient knowledge about self-management of cirrhosis.Methods:We gave 150 outpatients with cirrhosis a survey to test disease self-management knowledge. We then gave them a concise educational booklet and, 3 months later, a follow-up survey. We analyzed demographic and clinical correlates of baseline knowledge, and compared knowledge scores before and after the intervention.Results:Only 53% of the 15 questions were answered correctly in the baseline survey. The most commonly missed items related to diet, such as the sodium content of sea salt, as well as the safety of medications, such as acetaminophen and statins. After the intervention, 77% of patients returned the follow-up survey. This group's median knowledge score improved from 53% to 67%; improvement occurred across all domains tested.Conclusions:Cirrhosis patients lack the knowledge to effectively manage their disease. A simple educational intervention may improve patient knowledge.
The American Journal of Gastroenterology 03/2012; 108(3):302-5. · 7.55 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Surveillance for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is recommended in patients with cirrhosis, but the effectiveness of a surveillance program in clinical practice has yet to be established.
To evaluate the effectiveness of a surveillance program with ultrasound and alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) to detect early HCCs.
Four hundred and forty-six patients with Child A/B cirrhosis were prospectively enrolled between January 2004 and September 2006 and followed until July 2010. HCC surveillance using ultrasound and AFP was conducted per the treating hepatologist, although the standard was every 6 to 12 months. HCC was diagnosed using American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD) guidelines and early HCC defined by Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) staging. Performance characteristics were determined for surveillance using AFP, ultrasound, or the combination.
After a median follow-up of 3.5 years, 41 patients developed HCCs, of whom 30 (73.2%) had early HCCs. The annual incidence of HCC was 2.8%, with cumulative 3- and 5-year incidence rates of 5.7% and 9.1%, respectively. Surveillance ultrasound and AFP had sensitivities of 44% and 66% and specificities of 92% and 91%, respectively, for the detection of HCCs. Sensitivity significantly improved to 90%, with minimal loss in specificity (83%) when these tests were used in combination.
When used as a surveillance program in a real-world clinical setting, combination of ultrasound and AFP is the most effective strategy to detect HCC at an early stage.
Our results differ from the guidelines of the AASLD.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LBP) is involved in the modulation of acute liver injury and failure caused by acetaminophen (APAP). Although the biological activity of LBP is concentration dependent, little is known about its levels in acute liver failure.
Serum and hepatic LBP were measured in acute APAP-induced liver injury in mice. Serum LBP was measured in patients with acute liver failure from APAP and non-APAP causes.
Interestingly, contrary to other diseases, serum and hepatic LBP levels decreased significantly in mice within 24 h after being subjected to APAP-induced injury compared to the control (1.6 ± 0.1 vs. 3.5 ± 1.6 μg/ml, respectively; P < 0.05). Similar decreases were noted in another mouse model of acute liver injury due to carbon tetrachloride. Among patients with acute liver failure due to APAP (n = 5) and non-APAP (n = 5) causes, admission LBP levels were decreased compared to those of healthy controls (5.4 ± 1.4 vs. 3.2 ± 0.2 μg/ml, normal vs. acute liver failure; P = 0.07). However, the levels were not associated with the etiology of acute liver failure or 3-week outcome.
Serum and hepatic LBP levels are significantly reduced early after the induction of severe acute liver injury/failure due to acetaminophen and other liver injuries. This reduction in LBP production is specific to acute liver failure and may be important in developing future diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for patients with acute liver failure.
Digestive Diseases and Sciences 01/2012; 57(4):918-24. · 2.26 Impact Factor