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Minerva Medica 2019 June;110(3):191-8

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4806.19.05978-0


language: English

Older age and HDL-cholesterol as independent predictors of liver fibrosis assessed by BARD score

Aleksandra KLISIC 1, Ludovico ABENAVOLI 2 , Sharmila FAGOONEE 3, Nebojsa KAVARIC 1, Gordana KOCIC 4, Ana NINIĆ 5

1 Primary Health Care Center, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montenegro, Podgorica, Montenegro; 2 Department of Health Sciences, University Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy; 3 Institute for Biostructures and Bioimages (CNR), Molecular Biotechnology Center, Turin, Italy; 4 Department of Medical Biochemistry, School of Medicine, University of Nis, Nis, Serbia; 5 Department for Medical Biochemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia

BACKGROUND: It is known that non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and in particular non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, can progress to advanced fibrosis. However, pathophysiological mechanisms implicated in this evolution are not elucidated yet. We aimed to investigate the independent predictors of liver fibrosis in patients with NAFLD, determined by BARD score, one of the most used algorithms for fibrosis evaluation.
METHODS: This prospective study enrolled a total of 301 participants with NAFLD, as determined by a Fatty Liver Index (FLI) ≥60. All patients were categorized into two groups: with no/mild fibrosis (BARD score 1, N.=62) and with advanced fibrosis (BARD score 2, 3 and 4 N.=239).
RESULTS: Serum high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-c), glucose and glycated hemoglobin were higher (P=0.028, P<0.001 and P=0.002, respectively), whereas serum transaminases and gamma glutamil transferase levels were lower in patients with advanced fibrosis than in those with no/mild fibrosis (P=0.010, P<0.001 and P=0.005, respectively). There were no significant differences in oxidative stress (i.e., advanced oxidant protein products and malondialdehyde) and anti-oxidative protection markers (i.e., catalase) between patients with no/mild fibrosis and advanced fibrosis. Multivariate ordinal regression analysis showed independent associations and predictions of ages (OR=1.071, 95% CI 1.004-1.097, P<0.001), and HDL-c levels (OR=2.549, 95% CI 1.087-5.989, P=0.032) on BARD score categories in patients with NAFLD.
CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, we found that older age and higher HDL-c, are independent predictors for advanced liver fibrosis assessed with the BARD score. Future investigations are needed to further explore this relationship.

KEY WORDS: Fatty liver - Inflammation - Liver cirrhosis - Oxidative stress

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