The effect of the gut-liver axis dysfunction in liver disease

Today, I would like to introduce the relationship between Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and the gut.


Factors contributing to the progression of the NASH include oxidative stress, lipotoxicity, and mitochondrial dysfunction, and recently much attention has been focused on gut-liver axis dysfunction.


The gut and the liver are connected by a blood vessel called the portal vein, through which about 70% of the blood supply to the liver passes. Therefore, a series of bacteria, bacterial metabolites and toxins originating from the gut can affect the liver through the portal vein.

In NASH patients, changes in the microbiome and increased intestinal permeability (Leaky Gut) have been observed (Lixin et al., Hepatology, 2012; Jay et al., CMGH, 2015).

In fact, analyses in mouse models have shown that dysfunction of the gut-liver axis, such as increased intestinal permeability, bacterial overgrowth and enterotoxemia, contribute to the progression of inflammation and fibrosis in the liver (Samuele et al., Hepatology, 2013; Lau et al., BioMed Res. Int.,2015).


For these reasons, we believe that a pathological model that also shows abnormalities in the gut would allow for a more accurate assessment of NASH.

The STAM™model – developed in-house here at SMC – is the world's first mouse model that induces NASH and NASH-derived liver cancer, has been reported to show changes in the microbiome (Guoxiang et al., Oncotarget., 2016)

It has also been reported that in STAM™ mice, compounds alter the gut microbiota to improve NAFLD and NASH (Pinheiro et al., Biomedicines. 2022; Ishizawa et al., Gene. 2022).


If you have a probiotic or prebiotic that is able to improve the gut microbiome or a compound that has a positive effect on bowel diseases, why not try it out in this model?


Please feel free to contact us if you are interested in running a study in our STAM™ model, or if you would just like to learn more about the services we offer here at SMC Laboratories.


■About STAM™ model

■About NAFLD Activity Score