Cirrhosis antibodies heighten poor outcome risk for autoimmune hepatitis patients

Cirrhosis antibodies heighten poor outcome risk for autoimmune hepatitis patients. | Courtesy of
A recent study shows that cirrhosis at first diagnosis as well as antibodies used to treat soluble liver antigen/liver pancreas antigen (SLA/LP) both increase the risks of poor outcomes, short-term and long-term, for patients who have autoimmune hepatitis.

"While early diagnosis along with optimal medical therapy offers patients with autoimmune hepatitis a good prognosis, the disease can be very severe in some cases," Dr. Arndt Vogel, lead author from Hannover Medical School in Hannover, Germany, said. "Our study examines the clinical and genetic features of remission, relapse and liver transplant-free survival in autoimmune hepatitis patients."

The study also showed that patients who had childhood diagnoses of these illnesses were also at an increased risk for relapse, decreased life expectancy and need of liver transplants.

"Autoimmune hepatitis patients diagnosed in childhood, those that present with cirrhosis at the time of initial diagnosis or who have SLA/LP antibodies have poor clinical outcomes; these patients are in need for close surveillance,” Vogel said. “On the other hand patients with DRB104:01 have a better clinical outcome in the short and long-term suggesting that human leukocyte antigen (HLA) analysis and screening for SLA/LP antibodies should be integrated in the clinical routine for AIH diagnosis.”

Further details are published by a journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, Hepatology.