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Old 03-31-2008, 03:42 PM
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Default Possible cure for liver cirrhosis?

Man-made Molecule reverses liver cirrhosis in rats

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HONG KONG (Reuters) - Scientists in Japan have designed artificial molecules that when used with rats successfully reversed liver cirrhosis, a serious chronic disease in humans that until now can only be cured by transplants.


Cirrhosis is the hardening or scarring of the liver, and is caused by factors such as heavy drinking and Hepatitis B and C. The disease is especially serious in parts of Asia, including China.

Cirrhosis occurs when a class of liver cells starts producing collagen, a fibrous material that toughens skin and tendons. Such damage cannot be reversed although steps can be taken to prevent further damage. In advanced cases, transplants are the only way out.

In the journal Nature Biotechnology, the researchers said they designed molecules that can block collagen production by liver "stellate cells," which are also known to absorb vitamin

A.

The scientists then loaded the molecules into carriers that were coated with vitamin A, which tricked the stellate cells into absorbing the molecules.

"By packaging the (molecules) in carriers coated with vitamin A, they tricked the stellate cells into letting in the inhibitor, which shut down collagen secretion," the researchers wrote.

In the study, the researchers induced liver cirrhosis in rats and then injected them with the vitamin A-laced molecules.

"We were able to completely eradicate the fibrosis by injecting this agent ... we cured them of the cirrhosis," Yoshiro Niitsu at the Sapporo Medical University School of Medicine in Japan said in a telephone interview.

"The liver is such an important organ, after you remove the fibrosis, the liver by itself starts to regenerate tissues. So liver damage is reversible."

Explaining how the damage reversal came about, Niitsu said: "Liver is itself responsible for the production and deposition of collagen, it also secretes certain enzymes that dissolve collagen ... dissolve the fibrosis which has already been deposited in the tissues."

Niitsu was hopeful that the molecules would provide a cure for cirrhosis patients in time.

"We hope it (a drug) will be ready for humans in a few years," he said.

(Reporting by Tan Ee Lyn; Editing by Alistair Scrutton)
What do you think of this? For some reason, my first thought was that alcoholics would never have a reason to quit drinking. They'd just take a shot of Liver Molecules with their liquor.

Good news overall, of course. I've long wondered when we'd come up with a solution to liver disease.
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Old 04-02-2008, 10:13 AM
PixelRN
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I'll drink to that.

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Old 04-02-2008, 07:08 PM
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Old 04-07-2008, 07:47 PM
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Well hey! I'm a harm-reduction kind of guy. I'd rather have someone drink and protect their liver, rather than just drink until they end up in my hospital bed with cirrhosis, encephalopathy, DTs, esophageal verices, and acsites...waiting for a liver transplant...which of course goes awry because of their poor healing abilities resulting from their poor nutritional status so that they end up in the ICU for months....etc.

Imagine the health care dollars and nursing hours it would save!

Liver molecules for ALL!!!!

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Originally Posted by geenaRN View Post
Man-made Molecule reverses liver cirrhosis in rats



What do you think of this? For some reason, my first thought was that alcoholics would never have a reason to quit drinking. They'd just take a shot of Liver Molecules with their liquor.

Good news overall, of course. I've long wondered when we'd come up with a solution to liver disease.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:36 AM
b.love
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that's great.
liver cihrrosis is one of worst possible agonizing deaths there can be. im glad they are trying to find ways to bypass it.

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Old 06-17-2008, 12:01 AM
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You guys crack me up. Cheers!

MJ
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