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Comparing different strategies to reduce hepatocellular damage in obese common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus).

BACKGROUND: Obesity in common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) can lead to various liver pathologies. In other species, reduced caloric intake and weight loss improve prognosis, and, often, hepatoprotectants are used to halt or reverse hepatocellular damage from fat deposition in the liver. There are no published therapies for reducing hepatocellular damage in obese marmosets.

METHODS: Fifteen obese marmosets were used to evaluate the ability of caloric restriction and pharmacologic therapy (S-adenosylmethionine + milk thistle extract, or SMT), alone and combined, to reduce elevated liver enzymes. Body weight and serum chemistries were measured every 4 weeks for 6 months.

RESULTS: Across treatment groups, there was a significant reduction in liver enzymes ALT and AST over time. SMT alone significantly reduced liver enzymes ALT and AST at 6 months from baseline.

CONCLUSIONS: Caloric restriction and SMT, alone and combined, are effective at reducing liver enzyme levels in obese marmosets.

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