Alterations in neutrophil extracellular traps is associated with the degree of decompensation of liver cirrhosis
Introduction: Liver cirrhosis (LC) constitutes one of the main 10 causes of death worldwide. LC has a characteristic asymptomatic compensated phase followed by a progressive decompensated phase, in which diverse complications are presented. LC patients are highly prone to bacterial infections. The neutrophils in these patients present defects in the production of oxygen radicals, which are essential for bacteria elimination as in the activation of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). The main objective of this work was to determine the NETs and neutrophil activation markers in LC patients.
Methodology: Neutrophil purification was done with Ficoll Histopaque from a sample of the peripheral blood of patients with compensated and decompensated LC. Neutrophils were activated with Phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate to evaluate the release of NETs by means of fluorescence microscopy and fluorometry, while expression of activation markers (CD69, CD80, perforin, and CAP-18) was evaluated by flow cytometry.
Results: A significant decrease in the release capability of NETs was observed as the level of LC in the patient increased. When comparing serum levels in inflammatory cytokines among the different study groups, significant differences were observed. No significant differences were detected on neutrophil activation markers; nevertheless, there was a correlation between diminution of CD69 and CD80 expression in decompensated patients.
Conclusions: We demonstrated that LC patients with neutrophil extracellular trap release deficiencies could have an increased rate of complications.
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