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Altered Epithelial Tight Junction Indicators in Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Tuesday, September 23, 2014 — Poster Session III

12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

FAES Academic Center




  • S Abey
  • P Smyser
  • N Fourie
  • L Sherwin
  • W Henderson


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is prevalent in the United States (30%) and globally. Leaky epithelial tight junction (TJ) and inflammation have been associated with NAFLD pathogenesis. We investigated TJ indicators and inflammatory modulators in NAFLD patients. Patients (n=16, 50% male, Caucasians, age 30.6 ± 7.3 years) were recruited under a natural history protocol (2009-2013) and divided into NAFLD group (n=8) and control group (n=8) based on abdominal ultrasonography. Clinical data were analyzed (SPSS). Fasting peripheral blood (PaxGene; BD Biosciences) were collected. Serum LPS Binding Protein (LBP) levels were measured (ELISA Cell Sciences). RNA was extracted and analyzed (RT2 Profiler™ Human Inflammatory and Autoimmunity PCR array SA Biosciences PAHS-077 or nCounter® Human miRNA Assay Nanostring). LBP levels in NAFLD group were 1.48-fold higher compared to controls (p = 0.004). CCAAT/Enhancer Binding Protein beta (CEBPB) mRNA levels were lower in NAFLD group compared to controls (-2.56-fold). Hsa-miR-142-3p, hsa-miR-18b, and hsa-miR-890 levels were lower in NAFLD group compared to controls (-2.39 to -3.54-fold). Clinically, NAFLD group had a higher percentage of GI symptoms and significantly higher body mass index, body fat percentage, triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein, and C-reactive protein, compared to controls. Our findings suggest changes in TJ indicators and inflammation in NAFLD.

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