J Cancer Prev.  2019 Jun;24(2):72-78. 10.15430/JCP.2019.24.2.72.

Therapeutic Effects of Amino Acids in Liver Diseases: Current Studies and Future Perspectives

Affiliations
  • 1College of Pharmacy and Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, CHA University, Seongnam, Korea. ehkim@cha.ac.kr

Abstract

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common primary malignant tumor of the liver and the third most common cause of cancer-related death worldwide. HCC is caused by infection of hepatitis B/C virus and liver dysfunctions, such as alcoholic liver disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and cirrhosis. Amino acids are organic substances containing amine and carboxylic acid functional groups. There are over 700 kinds of amino acids in nature, but only about 20 of them are used to synthesize proteins in cells. Liver is an important organ for protein synthesis, degradation and detoxification as well as amino acid metabolism. In the liver, there are abundant non-essential amino acids, such as alanine, aspartate, glutamate, glycine, and serine and essential amino acids, such as histidine and threonine. These amino acids are involved in various cellular metabolisms, the synthesis of lipids and nucleotides as well as detoxification reactions. Understanding the role of amino acids in the pathogenesis of liver and the effects of amino acid intake on liver disease can be a promising strategy for the prevention and treatment of liver disease. In this review, we describe the biochemical properties and functions of amino acids and to review how they have been applied to treatment of liver diseases.

Keyword

Amino acids; Liver diseases; Hepatic steatosis; Cirrhosis; Hepatocellular carcinoma

MeSH Terms

Alanine
Amino Acids*
Amino Acids, Essential
Aspartic Acid
Carcinoma, Hepatocellular
Fibrosis
Glutamic Acid
Glycine
Hepatitis
Histidine
Liver Diseases*
Liver Diseases, Alcoholic
Liver*
Metabolism
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Nucleotides
Serine
Therapeutic Uses*
Threonine
Alanine
Amino Acids
Amino Acids, Essential
Aspartic Acid
Glutamic Acid
Glycine
Histidine
Nucleotides
Serine
Therapeutic Uses
Threonine
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