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Int J Artif Organs. 1996 Apr;19(4):240-4.

Effect of ELAD liver support on plasma HGF and TGF-beta 1 in acute liver failure.

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Institute of Liver Studies, King's College School of Medicine & Dentistry, London, UK.


The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of treatment with the extracorporeal liver assist device (ELAD) in patients with acute liver failure (ALF) on plasma hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), the most potent growth factor, and transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-beta 1), an inhibitory factor for liver regeneration. Initial plasma HGF, measured by ELISA, was significantly increased in the ALF patients (7.86 +/- SEM 1.76 ng/ml) compared with normal subjects (0.10 +/- 0.02 ng/ml, p < 0.001). After 6 hours of ELAD haemoperfusion, plasma HGF increased further (30.5 +/- 6.19 ng/ml, p < 0.001), with a subsequent decrease towards the initial value by 48 hours. Initial plasma levels of TGF-beta 1 determined by ELISA were significantly increased in the ALF patients (43.4 +/- 5.9 ng/ml) compared with normal subjects (25.1 +/- 2.3 ng/ml, p < 0.01), but there was no change in plasma TGF-beta 1 during the study period in either the ELAD or control ALF group. As HGF is a heparin-binding growth factor and similar changes in HGF were observed during CVVHD, one possible explanation is that heparin administered as anticoagulant for extracorporeal circulation is involved in the effects observed on HGF.

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