Microvascular proliferation of the portal vein branches in the liver of biliary atresia patients at Kasai operation is associated with a better long-term clinical outcome
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Aim of the study
We previously showed an increased number of smaller portal vein (PV) branches in the portal areas of liver biopsy specimens of biliary atresia (BA) patients. We evaluated the correlation between this histopathological feature and the prognosis.
Patients and methods
Twenty-five consecutive patients with BA encountered between 2000 and 2012 were classified into three prognostic groups based on their postoperative outcomes: Excellent (n = 11) for native-liver survivors with a normal liver function, Good (n = 6) for native-liver survivors with liver dysfunction, and Poor (n = 8) for survivors after liver transplant or on a waiting list. Data from morphometrical analyses, including the fibrotic portal area, numbers of PVs, diameter and total area of PV branches, were statistically compared among the three groups.
The number of PV branches per unit area of the whole-liver specimen in the poor prognostic group was significantly lower than that in the excellent group (3.1 ± 0.6 vs. 5.2 ± 2.0/mm2, p = 0.03). There were no significant differences in the other parameters.
This is the first report on the relationships between morphometrically analyzed PV branches and the postoperative course in BA patients. The portal venous system is involved as the primary lesion in BA.
KeywordsBiliary atresia Portal vein Hepatic artery Morphometrical analysis Postoperative course
We thank Mr. Brian Quinn for his comments and help with the manuscript. This study was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS: 19K10485, 19K09150, 19K09078, 19K03084, 19K18061, 19K17304, 19K18032, 18K08578, 18K16262 17K10555, 17K11514, 17K10183, 17K11515, 16K10466, 16K10094, 16K10095, 16K10434, 16H07090) and Grant from Kawano Masanori Memorial Foundation for Promotion of Pediatrics.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest in association with the present study.
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