Journal of gastroenterology and hepatology

Use of non-invasive serum glycan markers to distinguish non-alcoholic steatohepatitis from simple steatosis.

PMID 25168691


Serum glycans have been reported to be promising diagnostic markers for many inflammatory diseases and cancers. The aims of this study were to investigate whole glycan expression in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases and to evaluate the potential use of glycan profiles as new clinical biomarkers to distinguish non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) from simple steatosis (SS). We collected sera from 42 histologically proven NASH and 15 SS patients prior to treatment. Serum glycan profiles were measured by comprehensive, quantitative, high-throughput glycome analysis, and diagnostic values of serum glycans for NASH prediction were examined. Among the 41 serum glycans examined, the expression levels of 8 glycans in NASH were significantly higher than those of SS. Out of these eight glycans, three glycans (m/z 1955, 2032, and 2584) showed high areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve (0.833, 0.863, and 0.866, respectively) for distinguishing NASH from SS. In multivariate analyses with clinical parameters and serum glycans, these three glycans were significant predictive factors for distinguishing NASH from SS. The odds ratio of m/z 1955, 2032, and 2584 were 48.5, 6.46, and 11.8, respectively. These glycans also correlated significantly with lobular inflammation, ballooning, and fibrosis, but not with steatosis. We clearly demonstrated whole-serum glycan profiles in NASH patients, and the feasibility of serum glycans (m/z 1955, 2032, and 2584) as new noninvasive biomarkers for distinguishing NASH from SS.

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