Evidence of oxidative imbalance in long-term liver transplant patients

F. Trevisani, P. Caraceni, M. Simoncini, M. Micati, M. Domenicali, F. Dazzani, A. Zambruni, C. Stefanelli, G. Grazi, B. Nardo, C. Guarnieri, M. Bernardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Oxidative stress in patients undergoing liver transplantation results both from the pre-existing cirrhosis and ischaemia-reperfusion injury related to surgery. Previous studies have provided information limited to the immediate post-operative period. It remains to be established whether this oxidative imbalance is reversed in a longer time. Aims, Methods and Patients. This study aimed to compare plasma concentrations of thiobarbituric acid-reactant substances and α-tocopherol in 20 cirrhotic patients before liver transplantation and 22 patients in whom transplant had been carried out at least 6 months previously. Thirty healthy age and sex-matched volunteers served as controls (cross-sectional study). Five patients were evaluated before and after liver transplantation (longitudinal study). Results and Conclusions. Pre-transplant patients showed greater thiobarbituric acid-reactant substances and lower α-tocopherol levels than controls. Transplanted patients presented lower thiobarbituric acid-reactant substances and greater α-tocopherol levels than cirrhotic patients without reaching, however, the levels observed in controls. No correlations were found between oxidative parameters and liver tests. Hypertransaminasaemia, liver disease recurrence, and rejection episodes did not significantly influence the oxidative parameters. In the longitudinal study, transplantation induced a significant decrease in plasma thiobarbituric acid-reactant substances and a rise in α-tocopherol. Although a long-term improvement in the oxidative injury observed in cirrhotic patients occurs after liver transplantation, mild oxidative stress persists even in successfully transplanted patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-284
Number of pages6
JournalDigestive and Liver Disease
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2002


  • Lipid peroxidation
  • Liver transplantation
  • Oxidative stress
  • Vitamin E

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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