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Eur J Cancer Prev. 1993 Jul;2(4):357-9.

Sex hormones and trace elements in rat CCL4-induced cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.

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  • 1Chirurgia Generale I, Universit√† di Padova, Italy.


Several biochemical events accompany and mediate the development of chronic liver disease and its evolution into cancer. Low plasma zinc and high copper levels have been observed in various liver diseases, such as liver cirrhosis and viral hepatitis, while increased oestradiol levels have been documented in chronic liver damage and hepatocellular carcinoma. We administered CCL4 intragastrically to 10 female Sprague Dawley rats for 30 weeks. All animals developed cirrhosis and four also developed hepatocellular carcinoma. Plasma levels of zinc, copper and oestradiol were significantly higher in the latter group than in animals with simple cirrhosis. Progesterone, AST and bilirubin showed a trend toward significant differences whereas testosterone and ALP levels were unchanged. These findings add to the evidence that sex hormones and trace elements are involved in the process of the development of chronic liver damage and carcinogenesis.

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