The clinical management of patients with liver diseases as most liver diseases remain poorly diagnosed, staged and treated. Translational Research developing for diagnostic biomarkers, predictors of disease progression or new therapeutic targets is needed for all forms of liver injury from chronic viral infection, to liver fibrosis, steatosis, cirrhosis and cancer. The development of new therapeutic agents is critical for further improvement in the management of chronic hepatitis C, as current therapies have low efficacy in certain patient subgroups and are associated with frequent side effects affecting the patient’s quality of life. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a spectrum of disorders ranging from simple steatosis to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Steatosis has been described as histological changes within the liver and commonly exists in patients who remain asymptomatic.
However, up to 20% patients with NASH may develop cirrhosis and, of these patients who develop cirrhosis, 30–40% may suffer liver-related mortality. Similarly, fibrosis ranges from mild to severe, with cirrhosis being defined as the most advanced form of progressive hepatic fibrosis and staging of fibrosis remains largely based on histological examination of liver biopsies. Therefore, the development of new effective means to stage NAFLD or fibrosis is a matter of significant clinical importance.
These clinical problems have only rarely been tackled using proteomics. It was therefore important to include a study on biomarkers distinguishing NAFLD and NASH patients with the hope to further stimulate this line of research. To date, clinical proteomics studies targeting liver diseases have focused mainly on Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) biomarkers. A majority of patients are diagnosed with HCC present at an advanced stage with poor prognosis. Early diagnosis and definitive treatment remains the key to long-term outcome. HCC develops on the background of liver cirrhosis. Improvement in clinical management of patients with liver