The role of gut microbiota in liver disease development and treatment

Lijun Wang, Yu Jui Yvonne Wan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Liver cancer is the sixth most common cancer worldwide, and the third most common cause of cancer-related death. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), which accounts for more than 90% of primary liver cancers, is an important public health problem. In addition to cirrhosis caused by hepatitis B viral (HBV) or hepatitis C viral (HCV) infection, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming a major risk factor for liver cancer because of the prevalence of obesity. Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) will likely become the leading indication for liver transplantation in the future. It is well recognized that gut microbiota is a key environmental factor in the pathogenesis of liver disease and cancer. The interplay between gut microbiota and liver disease has been investigated in animal and clinical studies. In this article, we summarize the roles of gut microbiota in the development of liver disease as well as gut microbiota-targeted therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-18
Number of pages16
JournalLiver Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2019


  • Cirrhosis
  • Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)
  • Microorganism
  • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
  • Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)
  • Prebiotics
  • Probiotics
  • Synbiotics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology


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