Noninvasive diagnostic tool for identification of NASH by visualizing hepatic steatosis and inflammation


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) has been renamed metabolic dysfunction-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) and includes a range of liver conditions. Liver biopsy is the main diagnostic tool for identifying non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), but it has limitations and risks. Ultrasound and MRI can’t differentiate between NASH and NAFLD. Researchers have developed a noninvasive testing method called sequential ultrasound molecular imaging (USMI) using microbubbles to target liver proteins CD36 and ICAM-1. This method shows promise for diagnosing NASH, with a high level of accuracy. The ability to visualize CD36 and ICAM-1 quantitively brings researchers closer to a noninvasive way of detecting NASH.

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