Macrophage activation markers are associated with infection and mortality in patients with acute liver failure

US Acute Liver Failure Study Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Aims: Acute liver failure is a multisystem disorder with a high mortality and frequent need for emergency liver transplantation. Following massive innate immune system activation, soluble markers of macrophage activation are released during liver damage and their association with disease severity and prognosis requires exploration. Methods: Patients ALF from the United States Acute Liver Failure Study Group (USALFSG, n = 224) and King's College Hospital (n = 40) together with healthy controls (HC, n = 50) were recruited. Serum from early (Days 1–3) and late (>Day 3) time points were analysed for MAMs by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay correlated to markers of illness severity and 21-day spontaneous survival. Surface expression phenotyping was performed via Flow Cytometry on CD14 + monocytes. Results: All MAMs serum concentrations were significantly higher in ALF compared to controls (p <.0001). sCD206 concentration was higher in early and late stages of the disease in patients with bacteraemia (p =.002) and infection in general (p =.006). In MELD-adjusted multivariate modelling, sCD206 and sCD163 were independently associated with mortality. CD14 + monocyte expression of CD206 (p <.001) was higher in patients with ALF compared with controls and correlated with SOFA score (p =.018). sCD206 was independently validated as a predictor of infection in an external cohort. Conclusions: sCD206 is increased in serum of ALF patients with infections and poor outcome and is upregulated on CD14 + monocytes. Later measurements of sCD163 and sCD206 during the evolution of ALF have potential as mechanistic predictors of mortality. sCD206 should be explored as a biomarker of sepsis and mortality in ALF.

Original languageEnglish
Early online date8 Apr 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Apr 2024


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