1Fundación Investigación Hospital Clínico de Valencia. Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria-INCLIVA, Valencia, Spain.
2Laboratory of Neurobiology, Centro de Investigación Príncipe Felipe, Valencia, Spain.
3Laboratory of Neurobiology, Centro de Investigación Príncipe Felipe, Valencia, Spain. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hepatic encephalopathy (HE) is a complex neuropsychiatric syndrome affecting patients with liver diseases, mainly those with liver cirrhosis. The mildest form of HE is minimal HE (MHE), with mild cognitive impairment, attention deficit, psychomotor slowing and impaired visuo-motor and bimanual coordination. MHE may progress to clinical HE with worsening of the neurological alterations which may lead to reduced consciousness and, in the worse cases, may progress to coma and death. HE affects several million people in the world and is a serious health, social and economic problem. There are no specific treatments for the neurological alterations in HE. The mechanisms underlying the cognitive and motor alterations in HE are beginning to be clarified in animal models. These studies have allowed to design and test in animal models of HE new therapeutic approaches which have successfully restored cognitive and motor function in rats with HE. In this article we review the evidences showing that.