Int J Med Sci 2017; 14(7):629-638. doi:10.7150/ijms.17641 This issue

Research Paper

Involvement of Ornithine Carbamoyltransferase in the Progression of Chronic Hepatitis C and Liver Cirrhosis

Masahiko Ohnishi1, Akihisa Higuchi1, Hiroshi Matsumura1, Yasuo Arakawa1, Hitomi Nakamura1, Kazushige Nirei1, Toshiki Yamamoto1, Hiroaki Yamagami1, Masahiro Ogawa1, Takuji Gotoda1, Shunichi Matsuoka1, Noriko Nakajima1, Masahiko Sugitani2, Mitsuhiko Moriyama1✉, Hiroshi Murayama3

1. Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, Nihon University School of Medicine. 30-1 Oyaguchi kamimachi, Itabashi-ku, Tokyo 173-8610, Japan;
2. Division of Morphological and Functional Pathology, Nihon University School of Medicine;
3. Yamasa Corporation, Yamasa Corporation, 2-10-1 Araoi-cho, Choshi, Chiba 288-0056, Japan.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) license ( See for full terms and conditions.
Ohnishi M, Higuchi A, Matsumura H, Arakawa Y, Nakamura H, Nirei K, Yamamoto T, Yamagami H, Ogawa M, Gotoda T, Matsuoka S, Nakajima N, Sugitani M, Moriyama M, Murayama H. Involvement of Ornithine Carbamoyltransferase in the Progression of Chronic Hepatitis C and Liver Cirrhosis. Int J Med Sci 2017; 14(7):629-638. doi:10.7150/ijms.17641. Available from

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Background: The involvement of serum ornithine carbamoyltransferase (OCT) in the progression of chronic hepatitis and liver cirrhosis is unclear.

Methods: A total 256 patients with chronic hepatitis C and 5 healthy controls were examined. Serum OCT concentrations were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Serum OCT concentrations were compared with serum cytokine and chemokine levels, and with disease severity and development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

Results: The median OCT concentrations were 21.8 ng/ml for healthy controls, 36.7 ng/ml for F0 stage disease, 48.7 ng/ml for F1 stage, 77.9 ng/ml for F2 stage, 104.8 ng/ml for F3 stage, and 121.4 ng/ml for F4 stage. OCT concentrations were correlated with aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, γ-glutamyl transpeptidase, platelet counts, indocyanine green retention rate at 15 min, prothrombin times, the molar ratio of branched chain amino acids to tyrosine, and tyrosine. Furthermore, there were significant correlations among OCT concentrations and IP10 and IL18 levels. There were weak correlations between serum OCT concentrations and liver histology. The cumulative incidence of HCC in the high-OCT concentration group (≥75.3 ng/ml) was higher than that in the low-OCT concentration group.

Conclusion: The measurement of serum OCT concentration may provide a useful marker of disease severity, and thus could be a useful marker for a high risk of HCC occurrence.

Keywords: Ornithine carbamoyltransferase (OCT), hepatocellular carcinoma, chronic hepatitis C, liver cirrhosis, Bio-plex suspension array.