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J Clin Lab Anal. 1999;13(1):31-4.

Evaluating response to nutritional therapy using the branched-chain amino acid/tyrosine ratio in patients with chronic liver disease.

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Third Department of Internal Medicine, Mie University School of Medicine, Tsu, Japan.


The branched-chain amino acid (BCAA)/tyrosine (Tyr) ratio (BTR) recently has been reported to be a good indicator of the severity of hepatic parenchymal injury in patients with chronic liver disease. In the present study, sequential changes of BTR after BCAA administration were determined in patients with chronic liver disease to evaluate the value of BTR as a marker of the clinical response to nutritional therapy in these patients. This study comprised 75 patients with chronic hepatitis and 96 with liver cirrhosis. BTR was significantly decreased in patients with cirrhosis and hepatitis compared with healthy subjects. BTR was significantly correlated with the Child-Pugh score and with other liver function tests. BCAA increased significantly 2 hr after BCAA administration and decreased gradually thereafter. Tyr significantly decreased 4 hr after BCAA administration. BTR significantly increased 2 and 4 hr after BCAA therapy. The increase in BTR 3 hr after BCAA administration was low in patients with decreased basal BTR. The results of this study showed that BTR is a good index of the hepatic parenchymal damage and that it may be a useful marker for monitoring response to nutritional therapy in patients with chronic liver disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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