Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is characterized by hepatic lipid accumulation (steatosis) and inflammation (steatohepatitis). Currently, the exact underlying mechanisms leading to hepatic inflammation remain incompletely understood and therefore therapy options are poor. Analogous to the predominant metabolic risk factor for the metabolic syndrome, NASH patients often display diet-induced dyslipidemia and are therefore also at high risk for cardiovascular disease. Higher lipid levels, in general, are also widely associated with the production of reactive oxygen species during oxidation. However, the exact contribution of the specific type of lipids to hepatic inflammation still remains unclear. In this editorial, we aim to show that cholesterol, in addition to triglycerides and free fatty acids, is an important risk factor in NASH disease pathogenesis. Developing a better understanding of the contribution of lipids underlying NASH pathogenesis is essential for creating effective therapies against this prevalent disease.
- non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
- FATTY LIVER-DISEASE
- HEPATIC GENE-EXPRESSION