Non-Invasive Biomarker May Help Screen for Liver Fibrosis

Test is effective in high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes

MONDAY, July 14 (HealthDay News) -- Type 2 diabetes patients who are at high risk for liver fibrosis may benefit from a screening test using a non-invasive biomarker, according to a report published in the July issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Sophie Jacqueminet, M.D., of APHP-GHPS, Paris, France, and colleagues conducted a study of 1,131 diabetes patients with no history of liver disease who underwent screening using FibroTest, a non-invasive biomarker. In patients with presumed advanced fibrosis, a hepatologist reinvestigated using elastography and other tests if necessary.

Advanced fibrosis was predicted in 63 of the patients (5.6 percent), 45 patients were reinvestigated and advanced fibrosis was confirmed in 32 cases, the researchers report. There were also five cases of cirrhosis and four of hepatocellular carcinoma. Of the 696 patients who were age 45 or above, the prevalence of confirmed advanced fibrosis was 4.3 percent, and was 5.7 percent for hepatocellular carcinoma, the report indicates.

"External validation studies are necessary to replicate these results and better estimate the cost-efficiency of such screening," the authors write.

Thierry Poynard, the corresponding author for the study, is the inventor of FibroTest and has a capital interest in Biopredictive, the company marketing the test. Another co-author is an employee of Biopredictive.

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