Relationship between resolution of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and changes in lipoprotein sub-fractions: a post-hoc analysis of the PIVENS trial.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Dyslipidaemia is frequent in non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH); however, it is unclear if improvement in liver histology is associated with favourable changes in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. AIMS:To evaluate the relationship of NASH resolution and lipoprotein subfraction levels, markers of endothelial dysfunction, and macrophage activation. METHODS:One hundred and seventeen individuals with NASH who participated in the Pioglitazone vs Vitamin E vs Placebo for the Treatment of Nondiabetic Patients with NASH (PIVENS) trial with paired liver biopsies and serum samples available at baseline and after 96 weeks of treatment were included. Participants in the PIVENS trials received vitamin E, pioglitazone, or placebo for 96 weeks. Lipoprotein subfraction levels, intracellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1), vascular cellular adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1), E-selectin, and sCD163 levels were assessed at baseline and week 96 and their relationship with NASH resolution was examined. RESULTS:Fifty-seven individuals had NASH resolution and 60 individuals did not have resolution of NASH. NASH resolution was associated with favourable changes in lipoprotein subfraction levels compared to those without NASH resolution. Individuals with resolution of NASH had a significantly increased mean peak LDL diameter (ratio of geometric means [96 weeks vs baseline] 1.007 vs 0.996, P = 0.004), and higher frequency of LDL phenotype A (58% vs 33%, P = 0.003) at week 96, after adjustment for relevant co-variates including treatment group. No differences in VCAM, ICAM, E-selectin, or sCD163 levels by NASH resolution were found. CONCLUSIONS:NASH resolution is associated with favourable changes in a subset of serum lipoprotein levels. More studies are warranted to understand if these favourable changes are associated with decreased risk of CVD.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is associated with dyslipidemia and cardiovascular disease (CVD). AIM:To determine the relationship between resolution of NASH and dyslipidemia. METHODS:Individuals in the Pioglitazone vs. Vitamin E vs. Placebo for the Treatment of Nondiabetic Patients with Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (PIVENS) trial with paired liver biopsies and fasting lipid levels were included (N = 222). In the PIVENS trial individuals were randomised to pioglitazone 30 mg, vitamin E 800 IU or placebo for 96 weeks. Change in lipid levels at 96 weeks was compared between those with and without NASH resolution. RESULTS:Dyslipidemia at baseline was frequent, with low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) (<40 mg/dL in men or <50 mg/dL in women) in 63%, hypertriglyceridaemia (?150 mg/dL) in 46%, hypercholesterolaemia (?200 mg/dL) in 47% and triglycerides (TG)/HDL >5.0 in 25%. Low-density lipoprotein (LD) ?160 mg/dL was found in 16% and elevated non-HDL cholesterol (non-HDL-C) (?130 mg/dL) in 73%. HDL increased with NASH resolution but decreased in those without resolution (2.9 mg/dL vs. -2.5 mg/dL, P < 0.001). NASH resolution was associated with significant decreases in TG and TG/HDL ratio compared to those without resolution (TG: -21.1 vs. -2.3 mg/dL, P = 0.03 and TG/HDL: -0.7 vs. 0.1, P = 0.003). Non-HDL-C, LDL and cholesterol decreased over 96 weeks in both groups, but there was no significant difference between groups. Treatment group did not impact lipids. CONCLUSIONS:NASH resolution is associated with improvements in TG and HDL but not in other cardiovascular disease risk factors including LDL and non-HDL-C levels. Individuals with resolution of NASH may still be at increased risk of cardiovascular disease. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00063622.
Project description:Hepatocellular injury and inflammation are believed to be the primary drivers of fibrogenesis that ultimately lead to cirrhosis in patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). This study sought associations between observed improvements in fibrosis with improvement in specific histologic features, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease activity score (NAS) ?2, diagnostic category, and primary histologically based outcomes of two adult NASH treatment trials. The primary outcome for the study was fibrosis improvement from baseline to end of treatment, defined as a 1-point or more improvement in fibrosis stage. This is a retrospective analysis of biopsy data collected from the NASH Clinical Research Network Pathology Committee of Pioglitazone versus Vitamin E versus Placebo for the Treatment of Nondiabetic Patients with NASH Trial (PIVENS) and Farnesoid X Receptor Ligand Obeticholic Acid in NASH Treatment Trial (FLINT) baseline and final biopsies. Treatment group-adjusted univariable and multivariable logistic regression models related improvement in fibrosis to improvements in other histologic variables, resolution of steatohepatitis, and improvement in the NAS ?2. In PIVENS 221 subjects had baseline and 96-week biopsies, and in FLINT 200 subjects had baseline and 72-week biopsies. Improvement in fibrosis was found in 38% of PIVENS and 29% of FLINT biopsies; fibrosis improvement was more likely in treated than placebo subjects in both studies. Controlling for treatment group, fibrosis improvement was associated most strongly with resolution of NASH (PIVENS, odds ratio [OR], 3.9; 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.0-7.6; P < 0.001; FLINT, OR, 8.0; 95% CI 3.1-20.9; P < 0.001), and improved NAS by ?2 (PIVENS, OR, 2.4; 95% CI 1.3-4.3; P = 0.003; FLINT, OR, 4.2; 95% CI 2.1-8.3; P < 0.001). Improvement in histologic features associated with improved fibrosis for both studies included steatosis, ballooning, Mallory-Denk bodies, and portal, but not lobular, inflammation. Conclusion: These findings support a strong link between histologic resolution of steatohepatitis with improvement in fibrosis in NASH.
Project description:Serum high mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1) is a proinflammatory molecule that could potentially serve as a biomarker for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) due to its correlation with degree of liver fibrosis. The aim of the current study was to examine the cross-sectional and longitudinal relationships between serum HMGB1 levels and liver histology in adults and children with NAFLD participating in two large randomized controlled trials.Serum HMGB1 levels were measured at various time points in adults and children with NAFLD, who participated in PIVENS and TONIC clinical trials respectively. PIVENS trial compared vitamin E or pioglitazone to placebo in adults whereas TONIC trial compared vitamin E or metformin to placebo in children. Participants had liver biopsies at baseline and the end of treatment (96 weeks), and liver histology was reviewed by a central committee of study pathologists.In the cross-sectional analyses (n = 205 for PIVENS and 109 for TONIC), there was no significant relationship between serum HMGB1 levels and histological features such as steatosis, ballooning, inflammation, fibrosis, or presence of steatohepatitis in either adults or children. Serum HMGB1 levels did not change significantly during treatment either with placebo, vitamin E therapy (P = 0.81) or pioglitazone (P = 0.09) in the PIVENS trial. Similarly, serum HMGB1 levels did not change significantly during treatment either with placebo, metformin (P = 0.15) or vitamin E (P = 0.23) in the TONIC trial. In the longitudinal analyses (n = 105 for PIVENS and 109 for TONIC), changes in serum HMGB1 levels did not correlate with histologic improvement or resolution of NASH in either adults or children. There was no relationship between serum HMGB1 and ALT levels in either adults or children with NAFLD.Serum HMGB1 levels were not associated with histological severity or treatment response in either children or adults with NAFLD.
Project description:The PIVENS (Pioglitazone versus Vitamin E versus Placebo for the Treatment of Nondiabetic Patients with Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis [NASH]) trial demonstrated that pioglitazone and vitamin E improved liver histology to varying degrees, but the mechanisms are unknown. We conducted a study to examine the changes in adipose tissue insulin resistance (Adipo-IR) during the PIVENS trial and its relationship to histological endpoints. Adipo-IR (fasting nonesterified fatty acids [NEFAs] × fasting insulin) was calculated at baseline and after 16 and 96 weeks of therapy. Compared to placebo, the baseline Adipo-IR was not different in either the vitamin E group (P = 0.34) or the pioglitazone group (P = 0.29). Baseline Adipo-IR was significantly associated with fibrosis score (P = 0.02), but not with other histological features or nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) activity score (NAS). After 16 weeks, compared to placebo, the pioglitazone group had a significant reduction in Adipo-IR (-15.7 versus -1.91; P = 0.02), but this effect did not persist at 96 weeks (-3.25 versus -4.28; P = 0.31). Compared to placebo, Adipo-IR in the vitamin E group did not change significantly either after 16 weeks (P = 0.70) or after 96 weeks (P = 0.85). Change in Adipo-IR at week 16 was not associated with changes in any histological parameters at week 96, but improvement in Adipo-IR at week 96 was significantly associated with improvement in ballooning (P = 0.03), fibrosis (P = 0.004), and NAS (P = 0.01).Vitamin E improved liver histology independent of changes in Adipo-IR, and pioglitazone treatment acutely improved Adipo-IR, but this was not sustained. Changes in Adipo-IR were associated with changes in liver histology, including fibrosis.
Project description:Vitamin E improved liver histology in children and adults with NAFLD who participated in TONIC and PIVENS clinical trials, but with significant inter-individual variability in its efficacy. Cytochrome P450 4F2 (CYP4F2) is the major enzyme metabolizing Vit E, with two common genetic variants (V433M, rs2108622 and W12G, rs3093105) found to alter its activity. We investigated the relationship between CYP4F2 genotypes, ?-tocopherol levels and histological improvement in these two trials. V433M and W12G variants were genotyped in TONIC (n?=?155) and PIVENS (n?=?213) DNA samples. The relationships between CYP4F2 genotypes, plasma ?-tocopherol levels at baseline and weeks 48 (w48) and 96 (w96) and histological end points (overall improvement in liver histology and resolution of NASH) were investigated. As a result, the V433M genotype was significantly associated with baseline plasma ?-tocopherol in the TONIC trial (p?=?0.004), but not in PIVENS. Among those receiving Vit E treatment, CYP4F2 V433M genotype was associated with significantly decreased plasma ?-tocopherol levels at w48 (p?=?0.003 for PIVENS and p?=?0.026 for TONIC) but not at w96. The w96 ?-tocopherol level was significantly associated with resolution of NASH (p?=?0.006) and overall histology improvement (p?=?0.021)in the PIVENS, but not in the TONIC trial. There was no significant association between CYP4F2 genotypes and histological end points in either trial. Our study suggested the a moderate role of CYP4F2 polymorphisms in affecting the pharmacokinetics of Vit E as a therapeutic agent. In addition, there may be age-dependent relationship between CYP4F2 genetic variability and Vit E pharmacokinetics in NAFLD.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), the most common cause of liver disease among US children, may be associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. The present study sought to determine the prevalence of dyslipidemia in children with NAFLD and assess dyslipidemia by liver histology and histologic changes. METHODS:Individuals in the Treatment of NAFLD in Children (TONIC) trial were included (N = 173). In the TONIC trial, children with NAFLD were randomized to vitamin E, metformin, or placebo for 96 weeks. Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) improved in 56 children. Change in lipid levels from baseline and 96 weeks was compared between patients with and without histologic improvement and with and without NASH. RESULTS:Dyslipidemia was frequent, with low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) (< 40 mg/dL) in 61.8%, hypertriglyceridemia (? 130 mg/dL) in 50.3%, hypercholesterolemia (? 200 mg/dL) in 23.7%, elevated low-density lipoprotein (LDL) (? 130 mg/dL) in 21.5%, elevated non-HDL cholesterol (non-HDL-C) (? 145 mg/dL) in 35.2%, and triglycerides/HDL > 3.0 in 57.2% of patients. Histologic improvement was associated with significant decreases in cholesterol (-11.4 mg/dL vs -1.9 mg/dL, P = 0.04), LDL (-11.2 mg/dL vs -2.1 mg/dL, P = 0.04), and non-HDL-C (-8.8 mg/dL vs 0.5 mg/dL, P = 0.03) compared with those without improvement. Children with NASH resolution had significant decreases in cholesterol (-10.0 mg/dL vs -0.9 mg/dL, P = 0.02) and non-HDL-C (-7.3 mg/dL vs 1.1 mg/dL, P = 0.01) compared with those without NASH resolution. There was no improvement in triglycerides, HDL level, or triglycerides/HDL ratio in either group. CONCLUSIONS:Dyslipidemia is frequent in children with NAFLD. NASH resolution and histologic improvement are associated with improvements in some forms of dyslipidemia.
Project description:Vitamin E was recently shown to improve hepatic histology in a randomized controlled trial of pioglitazone or vitamin E for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (PIVENS). The current study utilized samples collected in the PIVENS trial to identify: (1) baseline metabolomic profiles that could identify who would respond to vitamin E treatment and (2) end of treatment metabolomic profiles reflective of histologic improvement. A comprehensive analysis of metabolomics profiles (n = 547) quantified by mass spectrometry was performed in vitamin E responders (n = 16), vitamin E non-responders (n = 15), and placebo responders (n = 15). At baseline, phenyl-propionic acid (Odds ratio: 29.4, p<0.01), indole-propionic acid levels (Odds ratio: 16.2, p<0.01) were directly associated with a subsequent histologic response to vitamin E treatment whereas ?-carboxyethylhydroxychroman (CEHC) levels were inversely related to histologic response. Adjusting for baseline values by analysis of covariance, the end of treatment levels of gamma-glutamyl leucine (Fold change: 0.82, p<0.02) and gamma-glutamyl valine (Fold change: 0.8, p<0.03) were significantly lower in vitamin E responders compared to non-responders. The levels of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase were not significantly different across the two groups. Subjects receiving placebo who demonstrated a histologic improvement also demonstrated lower levels of gamma-glutamylated amino acids (leucine, valine and isoleucine) compared to vitamin E non-responders. These data provide exploratory proof that there are measurable differences in the metabolic profile of subjects who are likely (vs unlikely) to respond to vitamin E treatment for NASH and in those experiencing histologic improvement (vs no improvement) on treatment and support further studies to validate these biomarkers.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Pioglitazone is a safe and effective option to manage patients with type 2 diabetes and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). However, there is marked variability in treatment response. AIM:To evaluate the relationship between concentrations of pioglitazone and its active metabolites and treatment outcomes in patients with NASH. METHODS:Pioglitazone concentrations were measured in patients with NASH treated with pioglitazone 45 mg/day for 18 months; liver biopsy samples were obtained at baseline and after treatment. The primary outcome was a ?2-point reduction in NAFLD activity score (NAS) with at least one-point improvement in more than one liver histology category and without worsening of fibrosis. A novel marker, the pioglitazone exposure index, was calculated to consider the concentrations of pioglitazone as well as the two active metabolites. RESULTS:The response to pioglitazone was concentration-dependent as evidenced by the significant relationship between both pioglitazone concentration and pioglitazone exposure index with changes in NAS (r=.48, P=.0002 and r=.51, P<.0001, respectively), steatosis (r=.41, P=.002 and r=.46, P=.0005), and inflammation (r=.44, P=.0009 and r=.40, P=.0003). The pioglitazone exposure index was also associated with a change in ballooning (P=.04). The pioglitazone exposure index was higher in patients with NASH resolution (2.85±1.38 vs 1.78±1.48, P=.018). A predictive model for the primary outcome was developed that incorporated baseline NAS and pioglitazone exposure index (AUC=0.77). CONCLUSIONS:This study demonstrates the importance of pioglitazone exposure to variable response in patients with NASH, and indicates potential factors that may identify patients most likely to benefit from chronic pioglitazone treatment.
Project description:Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is a common cause of serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) elevations and chronic liver disease, but it is unclear how well ALT elevations reflect the liver injury.To assess how well changes in ALT elevations reflect improvements in liver histology in response to vitamin E therapy.The vitamin E and placebo arms of the Pioglitazone vs. Vitamin E vs. Placebo in Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (PIVENS) trial were reassessed for associations among changes in ALT levels, body weight and liver histology. An ALT response was defined as a decrease to ?40 U/L and by ?30% of baseline. Liver biopsies taken before and after treatment were scored for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease activity (NAS) and fibrosis.ALT responses were more frequent among vitamin E (48%) than placebo (16%) recipients (P < 0.001). Among vitamin E recipients, ALT responses were associated with decreases in NAS (P < 0.001), but not fibrosis scores (P = 0.34), whereas among placebo recipients, ALT responses were associated with significant decreases in both (P < 0.05). Weight loss (?2 kg) was also associated with ALT response (P < 0.001), improvements in NAS (P < 0.001) and fibrosis (P < 0.02), but vitamin E had an added effect both with and without weight loss. Weight gain (?2 kg) was associated with lack of ALT response and worsening NAS and fibrosis scores in patients not on vitamin E.Decrease of ALT levels to normal in patients with NASH is usually associated with improved histological activity. Management should stress the value of weight loss and strongly discourage weight gain. Vitamin E can improve both ALT levels and histology with and without weight loss.NCT00063622.
Project description:Pioglitazone is used effectively to treat non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), but there is marked variability in response. This study examined whether genetic variation contributes to pioglitazone response variability in patients with NASH. This genetic substudy includes 55 participants of a randomized controlled trial designed to determine the efficacy of long-term pioglitazone treatment in patients with NASH. The primary outcome of the clinical trial was defined as ?2-point reduction in the non-alcoholic fatty liver disease activity score (NAS). In this substudy, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in putative candidate genes were tested for association with primary and secondary outcomes. A genetic response score was constructed based on the sum of response alleles for selected genes. The genetic response score was significantly associated with achievement of the primary outcome (odds ratio 1.74; 95% CI 1.27-2.54; p = 0.0015). ADORA1 rs903361 associated with resolution of NASH (p = 0.0005) and change in the ballooning score among Caucasian and Hispanic patients (p = 0.0005). LPL rs10099160 was significantly associated with change in ALT (p = 0.0005). The CYP2C8?3 allele, which confers faster pioglitazone clearance in allele carriers, was associated with change in fibrosis score (p = 0.026). This study identified key genetic factors that explain some of the inter-individual variability in response to pioglitazone among patients with NASH.