Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Journal: BMJ open gastroenterology


Vitamin D deficiency has been associated or implicated with the pathophysiology of the gastrointestinal conditions inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer, as well as with depression. No trials or epidemiology studies to date have investigated a link with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). A single case report has suggested a benefit in IBS of vitamin D supplementation. We hypothesised that IBS participants with vitamin D insufficiency would benefit from repletion in terms of their IBS symptoms. We undertook a pilot trial to provide data to support a power calculation and to justify a full trial.

Concepts: Inflammation, Immune system, Constipation, Cancer, Gastroenterology, Ulcerative colitis, Irritable bowel syndrome, Vitamin D


Chronic pancreatitis (CP) involves progressive inflammatory changes to the pancreas and can lead to permanent structural damage and impairment of both endocrine and exocrine functions. Current reports highlight a rise in the incidence and prevalence of CP. However, there is limited data currently available concerning patients with CP undergoing exercise therapy (ET). We aim to prospectively examine the influence of ET on sarcopenia in patients with CP.

Concepts: Pharmaceutical industry, Medicine, Clinical research, Exocrine pancreas, Randomized controlled trial, Medical statistics, Epidemiology, Pancreas


Limited data are currently available for patients with overt hepatic encephalopathy (OHE)) receiving physical exercise (PE). The aim of the current study is to prospectively examine the effect of PE on sarcopaenia in patients with OHE.


Squamous cell carcinoma of the oesophagus is a common cancer among South Africans. Due to the absence of effective screening and surveillance programme for early detection and late presentation, squamous cell carcinoma of the oesophagus is usually diagnosed at an advanced stage or when metastasis has already occurred. The 5-year survival is often quoted at 5%-10%, which is poor.

Concepts: Medical terms, Prostate cancer, Carcinoma, Barrett's esophagus, Squamous epithelium, Lung cancer, Cancer, Squamous cell carcinoma


Bile acid diarrhoea (BAD) is an underdiagnosed condition producing diarrhoea, urgency and fear of faecal incontinence. How patients experience these symptoms has not previously been studied. Bile Acid Malabsorption (BAM) Support UK was established in 2015 as a national charity with objectives including to provide details regarding how BAD affects patients, to improve earlier recognition and clinical management.

Concepts: Feces, Bile acid sequestrant, Gastroenterology, Bile acid, Malabsorption, Crohn's disease


Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the hepatic manifestation of metabolic syndrome and coronary artery disease (CAD) is the cardiac manifestation of metabolic syndrome. NAFLD is strongly linked to CAD and hepatic steatosis is an independent risk factor for CAD and cardiac mortality. The pathogenic mechanism underlying this association remains poorly understood. In this study, we explored expression of circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) in patients with NAFLD and associated CAD.

Concepts: Heart, Coronary artery disease, Atherosclerosis, Obesity, Metabolic syndrome, Steatosis, Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, Fatty liver


Although sex differences in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) risk are well known, it is unclear whether sex differences also exist in clinical presentation and survival outcomes once HCC develops.

Concepts: Actuarial science, Clinical trial, Cohort study, Epidemiology, Cancer


Hepatic macrophages account for the largest non-parenchymal cell population in the liver. Recent studies have found that hepatic macrophages have different functions in different stages of experimental liver fibrosis. Some studies found that there are different types of hepatic macrophages in the liver, although others have suggested that hepatic macrophages could switch to different phenotypes in different environments. Many studies demonstrated that while hepatic macrophages promoted fibrosis through the recruitment of proinflammatory immune cells, and the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines in the early stages, these also promoted the resolution of hepatic fibrosis through the secretion of matrix metalloproteinases in the late stages. This article will review the current role played by hepatic macrophages in liver fibrosis and the potential therapeutic targets that modulate hepatic macrophages.

Concepts: Glucose, Monocyte, Antibody, Matrix metalloproteinase, Cell biology, Liver, Cirrhosis, Immune system


A clinical diagnosis of bile acid malabsorption (BAM) can be confirmed using SeHCAT (tauroselcholic ((75)selenium) acid), a radiolabelled synthetic bile acid. However, while BAM can be the cause of chronic diarrhoea, it is often overlooked as a potential diagnosis. Therefore, we investigated the use of SeHCAT for diagnosis of BAM in UK hospitals.

Concepts: Bile acid sequestrant, Anarchy in the U.K., Great Britain, Bile acid, Malabsorption, United Kingdom