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Book Sections Year : 2019

Drug-induced liver injury in obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease


Obesity is commonly associated with nonalcoholic fatty liver (NAFL), a benign condition characterized by hepatic lipid accumulation. However, NAFL can progress in some patients to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and then to severe liver lesions including extensive fibrosis, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The entire spectrum of these hepatic lesions is referred to as nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). The transition of simple fatty liver to NASH seems to be favored by several genetic and environmental factors. Different experimental and clinical investigations showed or suggested that obesity and NAFLD are able to increase the risk of hepatotoxicity of different drugs. Some of these drugs may cause more severe and/or more frequent acute liver injury in obese individuals whereas others may trigger the transition of simple fatty liver to NASH or may worsen hepatic lipid accumulation, necroinflammation and fibrosis. This review presents the available information regarding drugs that may cause a specific risk in the context of obesity and NAFLD. These drugs, which belong to different pharmacological classes, include acetaminophen, halothane, methotrexate, rosiglitazone and tamoxifen. For some of these drugs, experimental investigations confirmed the clinical observations and unveiled different pathophysiological mechanisms which may explain why these pharmaceuticals are particularly hepatotoxic in obesity and NAFLD. Because obese people often take several drugs for the treatment of different obesity-related diseases, there is an urgent need to identify the main pharmaceuticals that may cause acute liver injury on a fatty liver background or that may enhance the risk of severe chronic liver disease. © 2019 Elsevier Inc.

Dates and versions

hal-02051781 , version 1 (28-02-2019)



J. Allard, D. Le Guillou, K. Begriche, B. Fromenty. Drug-induced liver injury in obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Advances in Pharmacology, Academic Press Inc., pp.75-107, 2019, ⟨10.1016/bs.apha.2019.01.003⟩. ⟨hal-02051781⟩
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