Vitamin A deficiency in chronic cholestatic liver disease: Is vitamin A therapy beneficial?

Cora Freund, Daniel N Gotthardt
Liver International: Official Journal of the International Association for the Study of the Liver 2017, 37 (12): 1752-1758
Chronic cholestatic diseases are progressive diseases of the biliary tract that cause hepatic fibrosis and ultimately lead to liver failure. Liver transplantation is the sole curative option currently available, and because of high morbidity and mortality rates of these diseases, new therapeutic approaches are needed. Vitamin A is a nutrient essential for health as it regulates many processes, including epithelial growth and immunological processes. Vitamin A is primarily stored in hepatic stellate cells, and during liver injury, through an unknown mechanism, these cells lose vitamin A and convert into collagen-producing myofibroblasts, which contributes to hepatic fibrosis. Vitamin A deficiencies in chronic cholestatic diseases have been frequently reported, and therefore, retinoid metabolism has attracted a lot of attention. Retinoids have been shown to attenuate or even prevent hepatic fibrosis, and to regulate hepatic immunological response to cholestatic injury in different rodent models of chronic cholestasis. Recently, their potential as therapeutic drugs in primary sclerosing cholangitis patients was analyzed. The aim of this review is to summarize the existing knowledge and hypotheses about vitamin A role and the disease progression in cholestatic liver disease.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"

We want to hear from doctors like you!

Take a second to answer a survey question.