PARIS — In a disease that has no current treatment, a plasma transfer system may offer hope to patients with alcoholic liver disease, according to a poster at the International Liver Congress 2018.
“It is unfortunate that patients with acute alcohol-induced decompensated liver disease are not able to be treated optimally,” Nikolaos T. Pyrsopoulos, MD, PhD, MBA, FACP, AGAF, FAASLD, FRCP, of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, told Healio Gastroenterology and Liver Disease. “What we would consider our golden bullet — this means steroid-containing therapy — turned out to be not very optimal. In an attempt to against this fierce fight, the extracorporeal liver device might offer a very good result for a very highly specialized segment of this population.”
This particular study measured plasma protein concentrations for 25 patients: 14 treated with ELAD (Vital Therapies) and 11 untreated controls. Patients receiving plasma from ELAD showed increases in soluble form of Fas receptor (sFas) that may inhibit apoptosis in primary human hepatocyte cultures and amphiregulin (AR), a hepatocyte mitogen.
In addition to increases in sFas and AR, the study showed bilirubin levels decreased in patients treated with ELAD compared to controls at day 3 (P = .033), day 5 (P = .005) and day 7 (P = .011). Bilirubin has previously been associated with survival in alcoholic hepatitis.
These changes point to a biomechanical response in alcoholic hepatitis and results from the clinical trial are expected later this year.
“The therapy is ready in clinical trials and we’re looking forward to results of the trial,” Pyrsopoulos said.
For more information:
Laptoda J, et al. SAT-457. Presented at: International Liver Congress; Apr. 11-15, 2018; Paris, France.
Disclosure: Pyrsopoulos reports serving on the scientific advisory board for Vital Therapies.