Ceruloplasmin, a reliable marker of fibrosis in chronic hepatitis B virus patients with normal or minimally raised alanine aminotransferase.

World journal of gastroenterology : WJG

PubMedID: 27920479

Zeng DW, Dong J, Jiang JJ, Zhu YY, Liu YR. Ceruloplasmin, a reliable marker of fibrosis in chronic hepatitis B virus patients with normal or minimally raised alanine aminotransferase. World J Gastroenterol. 2016;22(43):9586-9594.
AIM
To develop a non-invasive model to evaluate significant fibrosis and cirrhosis by investigating the association between serum ceruloplasmin (CP) levels and liver fibrosis in chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients with normal or minimally raised alanine aminotransferase (ALT).

METHODS
Serum samples and liver biopsy were obtained from 193 CHB patients with minimally raised or normal ALT who were randomly divided into a training group (n = 97) and a validation group (n = 96). Liver histology was evaluated by the METAVIR scoring system. Receiver operator characteristic curves were applied to the diagnostic value of CP for measuring liver fibrosis in CHB patients. Spearman rank correlation analyzed the relationship between CP and liver fibrosis. A non-invasive model was set up through multivariate logistic regression analysis.

RESULTS
Serum CP levels individualized various fibrosis stages via area under the curve (AUC) values. Multivariate analysis revealed that CP levels were significantly related to liver cirrhosis. Combining CP with serum GGT levels, a CG model was set up to predict significant fibrosis and liver cirrhosis in CHB patients with normal or minimally raised ALT. The AUC, sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value were 0.84, 83.1%, 78.6%, 39.6%, and 96.5% to predict liver cirrhosis, and 0.789, 80.26%, 68.38%, 62.25%, and 84.21% to predict significant fibrosis. This model expressed a higher AUC than FIB-4 (age, ALT, aspartate aminotransferase, platelets) and GP (globulin, platelets) models to predict significant fibrosis (P = 0.019 and 0.022 respectively) and revealed a dramatically greater AUC than FIB-4 (P = 0.033) to predict liver cirrhosis.

CONCLUSION
The present study showed that CP was independently and negatively associated with liver fibrosis. Furthermore, we developed a novel promising model (CG), based on routine serum markers, for predicting liver fibrosis in CHB patients with normal or minimally raised ALT.