1Department of Internal Medicine, Kaplan Medical Center, Affiliated to Hebrew University, Rehovot 76100, Israel.
2In Vitro Drug Safety and Biotechnology, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Temerity Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5G OA3, Canada.
In alcohol-induced liver disease (ALD) and in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), there are abnormal accumulations of fat in the liver. This phenomenon may be related to excessive alcohol consumption, as well as the combination of alcohol consumption and medications. There is an evolution from simple steatosis to steatohepatitis, fibrosis and cirrhosis leading to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Hepatic pathology is very similar regarding non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and ALD. Initially, there is lipid accumulation in parenchyma and progression to lobular inflammation. The morphological changes in the liver mitochondria, perivenular and perisinusoidal fibrosis, and hepatocellular ballooning, apoptosis and necrosis and accumulation of fibrosis may lead to the development of cirrhosis and HCC. Medical history of ethanol consumption, laboratory markers of chronic ethanol intake, AST/ALT ratio on the one hand and features of the metabolic syndrome on the other hand, may help in estimating the contribution of alcohol intake and the metabolic syndrome, respectively, to liver steatosis.