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Metab Brain Dis. 2017 Apr;32(2):513-518. doi: 10.1007/s11011-016-9937-4. Epub 2016 Dec 15.

The bile duct ligated rat: A relevant model to study muscle mass loss in cirrhosis.

Author information

1
Hepato-Neuro Laboratory, CRCHUM, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada.
2
Center for Translational Research in Aging & Longevity, Department of Health & Kinesiology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, USA.
3
Hepato-Neuro Laboratory, CRCHUM, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada. chantal.bemeur@umontreal.ca.
4
Département de nutrition, Faculté de médecine, Université de Montréal, CP 6128 Succ. Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec, H3C 3J7, Canada. chantal.bemeur@umontreal.ca.

Abstract

Muscle mass loss and hepatic encephalopathy (complex neuropsychiatric disorder) are serious complications of chronic liver disease (cirrhosis) which impact negatively on clinical outcome and quality of life and increase mortality. Liver disease leads to hyperammonemia and ammonia toxicity is believed to play a major role in the pathogenesis of hepatic encephalopathy. However, the effects of ammonia are not brain-specific and therefore may also affect other organs and tissues including muscle. The precise pathophysiological mechanisms underlying muscle wasting in chronic liver disease remains to be elucidated. In the present study, we characterized body composition as well as muscle protein synthesis in cirrhotic rats with hepatic encephalopathy using the 6-week bile duct ligation (BDL) model which recapitulates the main features of cirrhosis. Compared to sham-operated control animals, BDL rats display significant decreased gain in body weight, altered body composition, decreased gastrocnemius muscle mass and circumference as well as altered muscle morphology. Muscle protein synthesis was also significantly reduced in BDL rats compared to control animals. These findings demonstrate that the 6-week BDL experimental rat is a relevant model to study liver disease-induced muscle mass loss.

KEYWORDS:

Ammonia; Experimental cirrhosis; Hepatic encephalopathy; Muscle mass loss; Protein synthesis

PMID:
27981407
DOI:
10.1007/s11011-016-9937-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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