Manifestation of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis in Different Dietary Mouse Models

*Vera HI Fengler, Tanja Macheiner, Karine Sargsyan

Biobank Graz, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria.
*Correspondence to

Disclosure: The authors have declared no conflicts of interest.
Received: 28.01.16 Accepted: 18.03.16
Citation: EMJ Hepatol. 2016;4[1]:94-102.


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), which are usually associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome, are considerable health and economic issues due to the rapid increase of their prevalence in Western society. Histologically, the diseases are characterised by steatosis, hepatic inflammation, and if further progressed, fibrosis. Dietary-induced mouse models are widely used in investigations of the development and progression of NAFLD and NASH; these models attempt to mimic the histological and metabolic features of the human diseases. However, the majority of dietary mouse models fail to reflect the whole pathophysiological spectrum of NAFLD and NASH. Some models exhibit histological features similar to those seen in humans while lacking the metabolic context, while others resemble the metabolic conditions leading to NAFLD in humans but fail to mimic the whole histological spectrum, including progression from steatosis to liver fibrosis, and thus fail to mimic NASH. This review summarises the advantages and disadvantages of the different dietary-induced mouse models of NAFLD and NASH, with a focus on the genetic background of several commonly used wild-type mouse strains as well as gender and age, which influence the development and progression of these liver diseases.

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