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Keywords:

  • Serum Leptin;
  • Body Mass Index;
  • Overweight;
  • Steatosis;
  • Alcohol Cirrhosis.

Background: The mechanisms by which overweight makes the liver more susceptible to alcoholic liver injury remain to be determined. Therefore, we conducted the following studies to further elucidate the role of leptin in the pathogenesis of steatosis and cirrhosis caused by chronic alcohol consumption in human beings.

Methods: Two-hundred nine consecutive patients with alcoholic liver disease were studied. Serum leptin concentrations were measured by using radioimmunoassay, and the relationships between serum leptin level and liver lesions were studied. Statistical analysis used logistic regressions.

Results: When serum leptin, serum cholesterol, and body mass index (BMI) were considered together in the multiple logistic regression analysis, compared with patients with severe steatosis, serum leptin remains significantly lower in patients without steatosis (p<0.05) and in patients with mild or moderate steatosis (p<0.05). When age, serum leptin, serum cholesterol, and steatosis grade were considered together in the logistic regression analysis, serum leptin (p<0.01) and age (p<0.02) were positively and independently correlated with the presence of cirrhosis. After BMI introduction in the statistical model, serum leptin was no more correlated with the presence of cirrhosis.

Conclusion: In patients with alcoholic liver disease, serum leptin is independently correlated with steatosis grade and might play an important role in severity of fibrosis as fatty liver is more vulnerable than normal liver to factors that lead to fibrosis.