Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming an epidemic in Western countries. Notably, while the majority of NAFLD patients will not evolve until advanced liver disease, a minority of them will progress towards liver-related events. Therefore, risk stratification and prognostication are emerging as fundamental in order to optimize human and economic resources for the care of these patients. Liver fibrosis has been clearly recognized as the main predictor of poor hepatic and extrahepatic outcomes. However, a prediction based only on the stage of fibrosis is near-sighted and static, as it does not capture the propensity of disease to further progress, the speed of progression and their changes over time. These determinants, which result from the interaction between genetic predisposition and acquired risk factors (obesity, diabetes, etc.), express themselves in disease activity, and can be synthesized by biomarkers of hepatic inflammation and fibrogenesis. In this review, we present the currently available clinical tools for risk stratification and prognostication in NAFLD specifically with respect to the risk of progression towards hard hepatic outcomes, i.e., liver-related events and death. We also discuss about the genetic and acquired drivers of disease progression, together with the physiopathological bases of their come into action. Finally, we introduce the most promising biomarkers in the direction of repeatedly assessing disease activity over time, mainly in response to future therapeutic interventions.

Prognostication in NAFLD: physiological bases, clinical indicators, and newer biomarkers

Gallo, Paolo;Picardi, Antonio;Vespasiani-Gentilucci, Umberto
2022-01-01

Abstract

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming an epidemic in Western countries. Notably, while the majority of NAFLD patients will not evolve until advanced liver disease, a minority of them will progress towards liver-related events. Therefore, risk stratification and prognostication are emerging as fundamental in order to optimize human and economic resources for the care of these patients. Liver fibrosis has been clearly recognized as the main predictor of poor hepatic and extrahepatic outcomes. However, a prediction based only on the stage of fibrosis is near-sighted and static, as it does not capture the propensity of disease to further progress, the speed of progression and their changes over time. These determinants, which result from the interaction between genetic predisposition and acquired risk factors (obesity, diabetes, etc.), express themselves in disease activity, and can be synthesized by biomarkers of hepatic inflammation and fibrogenesis. In this review, we present the currently available clinical tools for risk stratification and prognostication in NAFLD specifically with respect to the risk of progression towards hard hepatic outcomes, i.e., liver-related events and death. We also discuss about the genetic and acquired drivers of disease progression, together with the physiopathological bases of their come into action. Finally, we introduce the most promising biomarkers in the direction of repeatedly assessing disease activity over time, mainly in response to future therapeutic interventions.
Liver-related events; Mortality; NAFLD; NASH; Prognosis
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12610/71324
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 0
  • Scopus 0
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 0
social impact