Factors associated with advanced liver disease in adults with alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency

Christopher Bowlus, Ira Willner, Mark A Zern, Adrian Reuben, Philip Chen, Brian Holladay, Lianqi Xie, Robert F. Woolson, Charlie Strange

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Background & Aims: Alpha1-antitrypsin deficiency (AAT) is an autosomal recessive disease that affects 1 in 2500 persons and might lead to cirrhosis. Our study aim was to characterize the liver disease in AAT and identify factors associated with advanced liver disease. Methods: A cohort of the Alpha-1 Foundation Registry who reported liver disease was surveyed with a liver disease questionnaire to obtain information related to liver disease, liver transplantation, and AAT phenotype. Results: One hundred sixty-five of the 2175 participants in the registry reported a history of jaundice or liver disease, and 139 (84.2%) completed the questionnaire. Of these, 71.3% were PiZZ, 18.0% were PiMZ, and 5.7% did not know their phenotype. Analysis of 104 participants with a known age of diagnosis included 30 participants diagnosed with liver disease before 18 years, of whom 15 had advanced liver disease defined as liver transplantation or listed for liver transplantation. No differences in age, age at diagnosis, gender, race, phenotype, or infant jaundice were identified. Seventy-four participants were diagnosed after age 18 years, of whom 25 had advanced liver disease. In this group, advanced liver disease was associated with male gender (P =. 006) and a greater mean body mass index (P =. 01), but not with race, Pi phenotype, infant jaundice, diabetes, or hypercholesterolemia. Viral hepatitis was more frequently reported in the nontransplant group (34.7% vs 8.0%, P =. 01), and the mean daily alcohol use was significantly greater in this group (P =. 04). Conclusions: Our results suggest that male gender and obesity but not alcohol or viral hepatitis predispose to advanced liver disease in adults with AAT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-396
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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