With passing time, there are more and more challenges for health. Therefore, there is also an increase in research on different health conditions. For instance, a number of studies now show many factors which contribute to liver disease.
According to researchers, there are a number of lifestyle habits as well as genetic factors which can damage the liver health. This can include alcohol consumption and a poor diet. However, there are also many contributors which may even come as a surprise to come people.
New research shows that gut bacteria may actually play a role in the development of many diseases of the liver like NAFLD. NAFLD is short of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Statistically, this specific condition is on the rise and is affecting more and more people.
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases states at least thirty to forty percent of the adults in the United States have the disease. In this percentage, around two to ten percent are children. Most of the people with this condition have simple fatty liver disease.
So, most of the cases do not have a link with any long-term liver issues. However, the statistics show that around nine to two percent of the people develop nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. This is a more serious form of NAFLD. If left untreated, it can further lead to more damage and liver cancer.
While in some cases, doctors are able to tell the reason for the development of conditions, in others they cannot. The new study may explain this. Its findings appear in the journal Cell Metabolism. The leading author of the study is Jing Yuan from Capital Institute of Pediatrics in China.
What Did the Study Show
Liver disease is one of the fastest rising health issues around the world. Many people are not aware of its severity even though it is very common. Consequently, they end up having serious health issues and even liver cancer. Therefore, research on it was important.
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In the new study, which was a collaboration between different institutes in China, The main focus of the researchers was on a particular case in which the patient had the auto-brewery syndrome.
Auto-brewery syndrome is a condition in which the body starts producing alcohol by fermenting carbohydrates from food. This further results in the rise of alcohol levels in the blood even if the person does not consume alcohol.
Previously, it was thought this was due to overgrowth of yeast called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. However, anti-fungal drugs did not seem to make a difference in most of the cases.
To investigate more about this issue, the researchers looked at eleven patients of NAFLand thirty-two patients of NASH. A further forty-eight people without NAFLD were also a part of the observation.
They found that the two strains of the gut bacteria Klebsiella pneumonia were sixty percent higher in people with NAFLD. On the other hand, the people without NAFLD had only six percent higher amount of the bacteria.
In follow-up trials, the scientists confirmed that the bacteria does cause a higher amount of alcohol production in human. Furthermore, they also tested it using a mice model. Further research may show a way to control the bacteria which may control the alcohol production.