Published online Jan 14, 2006. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v12.i2.322
Revised: June 8, 2005
Accepted: June 24, 2005
Published online: January 14, 2006
AIM: To investigate the efficacy of angiotensin II receptor antagonist on hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) activation in the patients with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).
METHODS: Seven patients with NASH were prescribed losartan, a selective angiotensin II type 1 receptor antagonist (50 mg/d) for 48 wk. Liver biopsies were performed both at the entry and end of the study in all patients. Quiescent and activated HSCs were identified by double immunostaining using anti-p75 and α-smooth muscle actin antibodies, and the number of each phenotype was counted. Similarly, the liver specimens obtained from the eight patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) were also examined as controls.
RESULTS: In NASH hepatic tissues, activated HSCs were dominantly distributed as compared with those in NAFL. The 48-wk losartan treatment induced a remarkable decrease in activated HSCs and a mild increase in quiescent phenotypes.
CONCLUSION: Our data suggest the crucial involvement of HSCs in anti-fibrotic effect of angiotensin II receptor antagonist on patients with NASH.