so, cheer and i made a date to talk ms and the liver. i don't know much about the liver yet, but here's a start:
the liver has many functions that are relevant to ms-ers.
i've looked at a few things w.r.t nutrition that involve the liver, such as d3 and uric acid for starters. i've been looking at zinc and the liver for a while, and the relationship between zinc and uric acid status.
i've posted quite a bit about zinc deficiency causing membrane (keyword: endothelial) permeability problems (intestinal wall, blood brain barrier, optic neuritis, veins, etc etc etc) that are familiar to your average ms patient.
cheer mentioned a case earlier today, where a liver transplant caused a major EDSS improvement in an ms case.
today i got onto the idea of zinc deficiency potentially causing damage to the liver itself, so i searched for liver enzymes and zinc deficiency on google with this interesting result:Effect of low-zinc status and essential fatty acids deficiency on the activities of aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase in liver and serum of albino rats
The effects of dietary deficiencies of zinc and essential fatty acids (EFAs) or both on aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) were investigated in young growing rats. Four groups of albino rats were fed diets deficient in either EFA (4% hydrogenated coconut oil) or zinc (6 ppm) or both. The control diet was adequate in EFA (4% soybean oil) and zinc (100 ppm). The feeding trial lasted eight weeks and the activities of AST and ALT were determined in the liver and serum. EFA deficiency had no significant (p > 0.05) effect on liver AST. However, zinc and the double deficiencies depressed AST activity in the organ. Deficiencies of EFA, zinc and their combination depressed ALT activity in the liver significantly (p < 0.05) with a concomitant increase recorded in the serum. The data suggested alteration in endothelial permeability of the plasma membrane and thus leakage of membrane constituents in the tissue studied. It is therefore considered that these deficient diets may affect liver tissue negatively in view of the role of these enzymes in amino acid metabolism.
what happens in amino acid metabolism? ammonia gets produced. it's the liver's job to detoxify said ammonia. ideally, it does this by converting the ammonia to uric acid. in which we know ms-ers are dramatically low.
http://users.rcn.com/jkimball.ma.ultran ... Cycle.html
the liver requires zinc to get the job done. and/or, apparently, EFA.Several studies have shown that zinc plays a regulatory action on the activity of ornithine-transcarbamylase (OTC), a key enzyme of urea cycle.
Multiple Sclerosis Linked to Abnormal Liver Test Results-
To make the link, the researchers used data from the Sylvia Lawry Centre for MS Research in Germany, the largest database of MS clinical trial information in the world. In all, medical information from 813 people with MS enrolled in various clinical trials from North America, Australia and Europe was analyzed. The study was funded by the MS Society of Canada.
Over a two-year period, there was an over three-fold increased risk of a person with MS having an elevated liver test result compared to expectations. An elevated test result indicates that liver enzymes have leaked out of their cells. This leakage into the blood stream may be an indicator of liver cell damage.
The risk of an abnormal liver test in 813 patients with multiple sclerosis or clinically isolated syndrome enrolled in placebo arms of clinical trials was greater than expected for alanine aminotransferase (ALT) (relative risk [RR] 3.7; 95% CI: 2.3 to 6.0) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) (RR 2.2; 95% CI: 1.3 to 3.6), although not alkaline phosphatase (AP) or total bilirubin, at first presentation. Abnormal test results were associated with higher body mass index (ALT only), male gender (ALT only), and a relapsing-remitting (vs secondary-progressive) course (ALT and AST only).
Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) has been used for 2,000 years as an herbal remedy for a variety of ailments, particularly liver, kidney, and gall bladder problems. Several scientific studies suggest that substances in milk thistle (especially a flavonoid called silymarin) protect the liver from toxins, including certain drugs such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), which can cause liver damage in high doses. Silymarin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and it may help the liver repair itself by growing new cells.
The active ingredient -- the one that protects the liver -- in milk thistle is known as silymarin, a chemical extracted from the seeds. Silymarin is actually a group of flavonoids (silibinin, silidianin, and silicristin), which are thought to help repair liver cells damaged by alcohol and other toxic substances. Silymarin also keeps new liver cells from being destroyed by these same toxins. It reduces inflammation (which is why it is often suggested for people with liver inflammation or hepatitis) and is a strong antioxidant.
(Contraindications: Milk thistle is generally regarded as safe. Side effects are usually mild and may involve stomach upset and diarrhea. Some people may get a rash from touching milk thistle plants.
Milk thistle should not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women.
People with a history of hormone related cancers, including breast, uterine, and prostate cancer, should not take milk thistle.
Do not take milk thistle if you are allergic to ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, chamomile, yarrow, or daisies.)
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