Fatty Liver, Inflammation, and Scarring: Dr. Friedman Talks Disease of Liver Progression and Prevention
Scarring of the liver leads to numerous health concerns and in this podcast, Dr. Friedman addresses these concerns and ways pharmaceutical companies are trying to prevent these diseases. He tells listeners How nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is one component of the umbrella term Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and why that's important, How metabolic syndrome connects to these liver issues and why type 2 diabetes as an accompanying disease is of special concern, and How pharmaceutical companies are targeting scarring prevention with a new drug. Dr. Scott L. Friedman is the Dean for Therapeutic Discovery and Chief of the Division of Liver Diseases at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. He has worked to address liver diseases since 1984 and considers himself a physician scientist who oversees clinical trials and program. He explains that the liver gets scarred as a consequence of a variety of insults, from hepatitis A and B to alcoholic disease to NAFLD and NASH. Progressive inflammation leads to scarring and then advanced scarring known as cirrhosis. He tells listeners that any disease of the liver often begins with a fatty liver and explains the physiology of this, how liver regeneration can be impeded by fatty liver, and how the liver functions to handle any toxins that enter our bodies. He says that the main fibrotic or scaring disease targeted by pharmaceutical companies is NASH, which falls under the umbrella term NAFLD. He adds that a disease that is rising worldwide and part of liver disease is a full body disease known as metabolic syndrome, which includes type 2 diabetes, obesity, and other issues. He explains why liver disease is often overlooked and why this is a problem. He finishes with mentioning some new drugs, one of which should be available soon, to prevent this scarring. For more, see helpful groups that address liver issues such as the American Liver Foundation, the Mt. Sinai web site, the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease, and the Fatty Liver Foundation.