Genetic predisposition to liver cirrhosis

Ed Uthman from Houston, TX, USA [creativecommons license] via Wikimedia Commons

Chronic alcohol abuse can damage the liver, leading to fat accumulation, inflammation, fibrosis (as healthy tissue is replaced with scar tissue) and, eventually, cirrhosis, a late-stage disease in which fibrosis is extensive and irreversible. Not all cases of liver disease progress to cirrhosis, however. Findings of a new study suggest that specific genetic mutations might predispose some people to developing cirrhosis. The presence of these mutations could potentially be used to identify those individuals with greater risk.

Lab Anim. (NY) 44, 191 (2015).
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