icon-folder.gif   Conference Reports for NATAP  
  38th Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver
Istanbul, Turkey. March 28-April 1, 2003
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  I. Tasci*, 1 M.R. Mas, 1 S.A. Vural, 2 N. Mas, 3 M. Serdar, 4 B. Comert, 1 G. Alcigir, 2 I.H. Kocar, 1 *Presenting Author 1Internal Medicine, Gulhane Medical School, 2Pathology, Veterinarian Faculty Of Ankara University, 3Anatomy, Hacettepe University, 4Biochemistry, Gulhane Medical School, Ankara, Turkey
Fibrosis and cirrhosis are common complications of chronic liver diseases. An imbalance between fibrogenesis and fibrolysis results in scarring of the liver parenchyma. We aimed to investigate the possible antifibrotic effectiveness of a newly modified interferon molecule peginterferon a2b (PEG-IFN) which has better antiviral activity and ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA). Liver fibrosis was established on 60 male Sprague Dawley rats with CCl4 in 12 weeks. After cessation of CCL4 Group I was left for spontaneous recovery. Group II was treated with PEG-IFN 1.5mg/kg/week, Group III with UDCA 25 mg/kg/day and Group IV with combination of both drugs. All rats were killed at week 16. Histopathologic fibrosis scores, tissue hidroxyprolin, TIMP-1 and MMP-13 levels were determined. Apoptosis was detected by TUNEL staining. Fibrosis scores were lower in both Group II, III and IV than Group I (p<0.05, p<0.05, p<0.007, respectively). Tissue hidroxyprolin levels were significantly decreased in Group II, III and IV when compared to Group I (p<0.05, p=0.00, p<0.001, respectively). Lower liver TIMP-1 and higher MMP-13 levels were measured in Group II, III, and Group IV than Group I (p=0.007, p=0.05, p<0.001 for TIMP and p<0.001, p=0.02, p<0.001, for MMP, respectively). Apoptosis was significantly increased in Group II, III and IV when compared to Group I (p<0.001, p<0.05, p<0.05, respectively). There was significantly higher apoptosis in Group II than III and IV (p<0.06, p<0.05, respectively). In conclusion, treatment with both peginterferon a2b and ursodeoxycholic acid improves CCL4 induced rat liver fibrosis. Significantly higher effects can be obtained using these agents in combination.