Federica Scaglioni

Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Modena, Emilia-Romagna, Italy

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Publications (15)29.8 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) ranges from simple steatosis to steatohepatitis, and cirrhosis in patients with alcohol intake less than 20g/day, and is usually associated with insulin resistance (IR). AIM: Given that no drugs are specifically approved for NAFLD, we tested the efficacy of a non-pharmacological multidisciplinary intervention based on a personalized diet, physical activity and behavior therapy. METHODS: In this open non-randomized study, personalized diet, physical exercise and behaviour therapy for 3 months were prescribed in 12 consecutive patients with NAFLD. Lifestyle, including total caloric intake, physical activity and resting energy expenditure was monitored by a SenseWear Armband. Insulin Resistance (IR) was measured by HOMA and oral glucose insulin sensitivity tests (OGIS); fat liver content was estimated by two different semi-quantitative scores and by the Doppler Power Index (DPI). RESULTS: Data show that the multidisciplinary intervention produced a significant reduction of total caloric intake, a 8% reduction in body weight, a modest increase in daily physical activity, a significant (P<0.001) reduction of aminotransferases and a decrease of total hepatic fat content. CONCLUSIONS: A 3-month multidisciplinary intervention inducing at least 8% of weight loss, improves liver tests and decreases liver fat content.
    Gastroentérologie Clinique et Biologique 12/2012; · 0.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Non alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is associated with obesity, diabetes and insulin resistance (IR). The aim of our study was to assess the relationship between IR, anthropometry, lifestyle habits, resting energy expenditure (REE) and degree of fatty liver at ultrasound in 48 overweight patients with NAFLD as compared to 24 controls without fatty liver, matched for age. Nutritional status, alcohol intake and physical activity were assessed by skinfold thickness measurements, a 7-day diary, and SenseWear armband (SWA). REE was assessed by both SWA (REE-SWA) and a Vmax metabolic cart (REE-Vmax). Fatty liver was measured by US and the Doppler Power Index was calculated. IR was assessed using the HOMA index. There was significant correlation between waist circumference, HOMA, Doppler power index and fatty liver grade at US. Multivariate analysis showed that alteration of waist circumference, Doppler power index, and HOMA were the major significant predictors of fatty liver. Our data demonstrated a significant association between NAFLD and central adiposity and IR.
    Frontiers in bioscience (Elite edition) 01/2012; 4:1015-23.
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    ABSTRACT: Hypothyroidism is associated with the risk of development of the metabolic syndrome (MS) and hypercholesterolemia. Direct evidence that hypothyroidism might be associated with advanced chronic liver disease via nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is limited. We studied the relationship between thyroid hormones, thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), cholesterol, and NASH. In consecutive euthyroid patients with biopsy-proven nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, TSH and thyroid hormone (FT3 and FT4) concentrations were compared in 25 patients with steatosis and 44 non-cirrhotic NASH patients featuring concurrent ballooning, lobular inflammation and steatosis. The MS was diagnosed according to ATP III criteria. A meta-analysis of previously published studies was performed to evaluate whether NASH, compared to simple steatosis, is associated with lower cholesterol levels. At univariate analysis, compared to those with steatosis, patients with NASH have a wider waist, elevated levels of BMI, ALT, AST, fasting insulin, HOMA-IR, ferritin, TSH and a lower serum cholesterol. At stepwise multivariable logistic regression analysis, the independent predictors of NASH are high HOMA and TSH and lower total cholesterol (Model 1); MS and high TSH (Model 2). At meta-analysis, serum total cholesterol levels are significantly lower in predominantly non-cirrhotic NASH than in simple steatosis. This study provides cross-sectional and meta-analytic evidence that, in euthyroid patients, high-though-normal TSH values are independently associated with NASH. Further work is needed to ascertain the role, if any, of lower cholesterol serum levels in assisting in the diagnosis of NASH.
    Internal and Emergency Medicine 05/2011; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and alcoholic steatohepatitis (ASH) have a similar pathogenesis and histopathology but a different etiology and epidemiology. NASH and ASH are advanced stages of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and alcoholic fatty liver disease (AFLD). NAFLD is characterized by excessive fat accumulation in the liver (steatosis), without any other evident causes of chronic liver diseases (viral, autoimmune, genetic, etc.), and with an alcohol consumption ≤20-30 g/day. On the contrary, AFLD is defined as the presence of steatosis and alcohol consumption >20-30 g/day. The most common phenotypic manifestations of primary NAFLD/NASH are overweight/obesity, visceral adiposity, type 2 diabetes, hypertriglyceridemia and hypertension. The prevalence of NAFLD in the general population in Western countries is estimated to be 25-30%. The prevalence and incidence of NASH and ASH are not known because of the impossibility of performing liver biopsy in the general population. Up to 90% of alcoholics have fatty liver, and 5-15% of these subjects will develop cirrhosis over 20 years. The risk of cirrhosis increases to 30-40% in those who continue to drink alcohol. About 10-35% of alcoholics exhibit changes on liver biopsy consistent with alcoholic hepatitis. Natural histories of NASH and ASH are not completely defined, even if patients with NASH have a reduced life expectancy due to liver-related death and cardiovascular diseases. The best treatment of AFLD/ASH is to stop drinking, and the most effective first-line therapeutic option for NAFLD/NASH is non-pharmacologic lifestyle interventions through a multidisciplinary approach including weight loss, dietary changes, physical exercise, and cognitive-behavior therapy.
    Digestive Diseases 01/2011; 29(2):202-10. · 2.73 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Hepatology - J HEPATOL. 01/2010; 52.
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    ABSTRACT: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is rapidly becoming the most common liver disease worldwide. The prevalence of NAFLD in the general population of Western countries is 20-30%. About 2-3% of the general population is estimated to have non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), which may progress to liver cirrhosis and hepatocarcinoma. As a rule, the prevalence of NAFLD is higher in males and increases with increasing age, and it is influenced by the diagnostic method and the characteristics of the population, especially lifestyle habits. Population-based studies provide better estimates of the prevalence of NAFLD as compared to autoptic and clinical studies, but few such studies have been performed to date. The diagnosis of NAFLD in population studies is usually obtained by ultrasonography, which is known to underestimate the prevalence of fatty liver. The Dallas Heart Study and the Dionysos Study reported that 30% of the adults in the USA and 25% in Italy have NAFLD. In these studies, 79% and 55% of patients with NAFLD had normal aminotransferase levels, showing that liver enzymes are not surrogate markers of NAFLD in the general population. Noninvasive markers such as the fatty liver index obtained from the Dionysos Study may be useful to screen for NAFLD in the general population. The most important risk factors for NAFLD are male gender, age, obesity, insulin resistance and the cardiometabolic alterations that define the metabolic syndrome. The prevalence of NAFLD is 80-90% in obese adults, 30-50% in patients with diabetes and up to 90% in patients with hyperlipidemia. The prevalence of NAFLD among children is 3-10%, rising up to 40-70% among obese children. Moreover, pediatric NAFLD increased from about 3% a decade ago to 5% today, with a male-to-female ratio of 2:1. The incidence and natural history of NAFLD are still not well defined, but it is recognized that the majority of individuals with NAFLD do not develop NASH. The incidence of NAFLD is probably increasing in Western countries, strictly linked to lifestyle habits.
    Digestive Diseases 01/2010; 28(1):155-61. · 2.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Population-based studies on the natural history of chronic viral liver disease that consider co-morbidity factors, such as alcohol or metabolic diseases, are lacking. We report here the contribution of ethanol intake and non-organ-specific autoantibodies (NOSA) to the course of chronic viral disease in the Dionysos cohort. As reported elsewhere, the Dionysos study was performed in two towns of Northern Italy, started in 1992 with 10 years of follow-up in 2002, and allowed us to quantify the burden of chronic liver disease in Northern Italy. We followed 139 subjects with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and 61 with chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection for a median (IQR) time of 8.4 (1.0) and 8.3 (0.9) years, respectively. The incidence and remission rates of steatosis were 9.0 and 29.7 per 1,000 person-years in the HCV cohort and 4.0 and 30.4 per 1,000 person-years in the HBV cohort. Progression to cirrhosis and hepatocarcinoma was more common in the HCV than in the HBV cohort. In the HCV cohort, ethanol intake was an independent predictor of liver cirrhosis and of death rate in both cohorts. We found no association between baseline NOSA and 8.4-year mortality. We conclude that morbidity and mortality rate of HBV and HCV infection in the general population is lower than that reported in secondary care populations, blood donors, or clinical series, and that ethanol intake >30 g/day is the most important and evitable risk factor for cirrhosis and death in patients with chronic HCV or HBV infection.
    Digestive Diseases 01/2010; 28(6):799-801. · 2.73 Impact Factor
  • Digestive and Liver Disease - DIG LIVER DIS. 01/2010; 42.
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    ABSTRACT: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and chronic hepatitis C feature steatosis and insulin resistance (IR), conditions associated with the metabolic syndrome (MS). To assess the prevalence of MS and determinants of IR in patients with NAFLD and chronic hepatitis C. Ninety-three consecutive patients with NAFLD, 97 with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes 1 and 2, and 182 'healthy' controls without steatosis were enrolled in the present study. The prevalence of MS was assessed by modified Adult Treatment Panel III criteria and IR by the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). IR was defined as the 75th percentile of the HOMA-IR of control subjects. While the prevalence of IR was similar in NAFLD and HCV-infected subjects (70.0% and 78.7%, respectively), the prevalence of MS was significantly higher in NAFLD patients than in HCV-infected patients (27.9% versus 4.1%) and in controls (5.6%). With multivariate analysis, IR was predicted by body mass index (OR 1.263; 95% CI 1.078 to 1.480) and triglyceridemia (OR 1.011; 95% CI 1.002 to 1.020) in NAFLD and by sex (OR for female sex 0.297; 95% CI 0.094 to 0.940) and fibrosis stage (OR 2.751; 95% CI 1.417 to 5.340) in chronic hepatitis C. IR is independently associated with body mass index and triglyceridemia in NAFLD, sex and fibrosis in chronic HCV infection, and has a higher prevalence in NAFLD and chronic hepatitis C than in controls. However, the frequency of MS in HCVinfected patients, similar to that of controls, is significantly lower than that seen in NAFLD patients. The current diagnostic criteria of MS are more likely to 'capture' patients with NAFLD than with chronic hepatitis C, although both groups are insulin resistant.
    Canadian journal of gastroenterology = Journal canadien de gastroenterologie 05/2009; 23(4):273-8. · 1.53 Impact Factor
  • Digestive and Liver Disease - DIG LIVER DIS. 01/2009; 41(3).
  • Journal of Hepatology - J HEPATOL. 01/2007; 46.
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate carotid intima-media thickening (IMT) and plaques, gallstone disease (GD) and fatty liver (FL) as a function of age. In 449 subjects, FL and carotid disease were assessed ultrasonographically. In a subgroup of 65/449 patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), carotid disease, GD and associated factors were determined. FL of unspecified etiology was more common in younger and GD in older individuals. FL subjects had an increased prevalence of IMT and a decreased prevalence of plaques and manifested carotid disease earlier. Plaques were more common in subjects with GD. Age was an independent predictor of carotid disease outcome and FL was a protective factor for plaques. In NAFLD, there was an inverse correlation between body weight and age and the latter independently predicted carotid findings. Cardiovascular risk in patients with FL and NAFLD needs to be assessed as a function of age and body weight.
    World Journal of Gastroenterology 10/2006; 12(36):5826-33. · 2.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To ascertain whether the etiology of hepatic steatosis modulates insulin resistance (IR) and to determine the predictors of IR. We studied IR through HOMA IR in 146 subjects, 99 of whom had ultrasonographic and/or histologic steatosis. Twenty-two had familial heterozygous hypobetalipoproteinemia (FHBL), 48 had non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), 34 HCV infection (17 with HCV1b, 17 with HCV3a) and 42 were healthy controls without steatosis. Steatosis was present in 77.3% of FHBL and, by enrolment criteria, in all NAFLD and HCV cases. Overall HOMA-IR correlated with BMI and GGT (P<0.01). FHBL and healthy groups had similar HOMA-IR and GGT values, whereas higher levels were observed in HCV and NAFLD. HCV3a and FHBL patients were hypolipidemic. HOMA-IR was similar in FHBL patients and controls and lower than in HCV and NAFLD. FHBL patients had a high extent of steatosis, similar to that observed in HCV3a, but lower grading and staging than NAFLD and HCV. At multivariate analysis, steatosis and GGT predicted HOMA-IR. Data suggest that not all hepatic fat associates with IR. FHBL patients, for some aspects, resemble HCV3a infection, possibly suggesting a shared steatogenic mechanism. Among steatotic patients serum GGT levels is the independent predictor of IR.
    Journal of Hepatology 01/2006; 44(1):190-6. · 9.86 Impact Factor
  • Atherosclerosis Supplements - ATHEROSCLER SUPPL. 01/2006; 7(3):411-411.
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    ABSTRACT: Hepatic steatosis may be both an adaptive phenomenon and an example of lipotoxicity. Its prevalence ranks in the same order of magnitude of insulin resistance in the general population. Studies support the finding that hepatic steatosis is secondary to insulin resistance and not vice versa. A steatotic liver will further contribute to the development of insulin resistance through impaired clearance of insulin from the portal blood, creating a vicious cycle. Insulin resistance is the leading force in the pathogenesis and natural history of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Dysfunction of energetic homeostasis and the interaction of adiponectin, leptin and tumour necrosis factor-alpha are key events in the pathogenesis of steatosis and insulin resistance. Insulin resistance represents the frame within which hepatic and extrahepatic non-alcoholic fatty liver disease-related clinical manifestations are to be anticipated and interpreted.
    Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics 12/2005; 22 Suppl 2:64-70. · 4.55 Impact Factor