A rigorous method for liver biopsy
Neither vitamin E nor vitamin C supplements reduced the risk of major cardiovascular events in a large, long-term study of male physicians, according to a study in the November 12 issue of Journal of the American Medical Association. The article is being released early online November 9 to coincide with the scientific presentation of the
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Liver biopsy is still considered the gold standard for grading, staging and “stad-ging” the chronic liver disease.
In addition, it remains a primary source for acquiring new knowledge on the liver pathology. Demand for precise evaluations of the fibrosis and inflammatory tissue detectable in liver biopsy samples has been fuelled by the need to understand the closest-to-real effects of new antiviral molecules on the lesions characterising the histological patterns of chronic viral, toxic, metabolic and autoimmune diseases. The current scoring systems do not quantify these lesions, but only describe subjective classes of severity labelled with ordinal numbers, and the available automated methods based on observer-computer interactions do not abolish observer subjectivity or use an inadequate measurement unit, and also take too long to analyse entire histological sections.
A research article to be published on December 28, 2008 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addresses this question. The research team led by Nicola Dioguardi from Italy described a quantitative analysis method of liver biopsy sections with a machine called “Metriser” which, at a speed of 0.1 mm2/s, automatically measures the residual hepatocyte mass (including hepatocytes vacuolisation), inflammation, fibrosis and the loss of liver tissue tectonics.
In the absence of any other means of obtaining correct reproducible information concerning the status of liver tissue, the authors explored the possibility of constructing the first totally computer-aided and strictly objective method of rigorously, rapidly and easily obtaining metrical measurements of liver lesions directly from bioptic specimens. The method provides: (1) the metrical extension in two-dimensions of the residual hepatocellular set including the area of vacuoles pertinent to abnormal lipid accumulation; (2) the geometric measure of the inflammation basin, distinguishing intra-basin space and extra-basin dispersed parenchymal leukocytes; (3) he magnitude of collagen islets, which were considered truncated fractals and classified into three classes of magnitude; and (4) the Tectonic Index that quantifies alterations (disorders) in the organization of liver tissue.
This study not only introduced a new kind of liver biopsy measurement but also described a histological picture in verbal and repeatable terms.
A new method of characterizing breast lesions found during an MRI exam could result in fewer biopsies of benign tumors with the benefits of reduced pain and expense for patients and providers, according to a paper that will be presented (Sunday, Nov. 30) at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).
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In the December issue of European Urology Dr. Curtis Nickel and associates report on the evidence of a relationship between prostate inflammation and lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in men enrolled in the REDUCE trial. The REDUCE (Reduction by DUtasteride of prostate Cancer Events) trial is a 4-year, phase-III placebo-controlled study that evaluates whether the
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A new randomized, prospective trial has shown that orlistat, a commonly prescribed inhibitor of fat absorption, does not help patients with fatty liver disease (FLD) lose weight, nor does it improve their liver enzymes or insulin resistance. These findings are in the January issue of Hepatology, a journal published by John Wiley & Sons on
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An NIH funded multi-center clinical trial found no benefit from “maintenance therapy,” low-dose peginterferon used for hepatitis C patients who have not responded to an initial round of treatment. In addition, the study showed a surprising health decline in patients with liver disease over the course of four years. A Saint Louis University researcher was
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A novel protein marker has been found that identifies rare adult liver stem cells, whose ability to regenerate injured liver tissue has the potential for cell-replacement therapy. For the first time, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine led by Linda Greenbaum, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology, have
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