Volume 12 Issue 8, August 2015

Volume 12 Issue 8

Cover image supplied by H. Plovier and P. D. Cani, WELBIO (Walloon Excellence in Life sciences and BIOtechnology), Louvain Drug Research Institue, Metabolism and Nutrition research group, Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium. Founded by an ERC Starting Grant 336452-ENIGMO.Immunofluorescence image of enteroendocrine L cells in the epithelium and gut bacteria in the luminal content of the mouse proximal colon. Tissue was stained to show L cells (mouse anti-GLP1) and intermediary filaments of the colonic epithelium (rabbit anti-cytokeratin 8). Nuclei were stained by Hoechst 33342. Gut microbes present in the colonic content can be seen thanks to aspecific staining.

Research Highlights

News and Views

  • News & Views |

    Early detection is the best opportunity to decrease cancer mortality rates. As such, a new study has made a head-to-head comparison of endoscopic ultrasonography and MRI for the detection of pancreatic lesions in high-risk asymptomatic individuals. Using multiple techniques for detection and screening could be the best approach.

    • Marcia I. Canto
    •  & Ralph H. Hruban
  • News & Views |

    Restrictive transfusion strategy saves blood and is safe in most clinical settings, including gastrointestinal bleeding. However, generalizability of a restrictive transfusion approach in acute gastrointestinal bleeding remains controversial as it often affects elderly patients with major cardiovascular comorbidity who have been excluded from existing trials.

    • Càndid Villanueva
  • News & Views |

    NAFLD is considered a multisystem disease that affects many extrahepatic organs, including the heart and the vascular system. In a new study, the connection between NAFLD and cardiac dysfunction has now been confirmed, giving insights into underlying mechanisms.

    • Søren Møller
    •  & Flemming Bendtsen


  • Review Article |

    Mathematical modelling of the viral kinetics of hepatitis C infection can help inform clinicians of the optimal treatment regimens to achieve a sustained virologic response. In this Review, Perelson and Guedj describe the mathematical models and concepts used to understand hepatitis C infection, its response to antiviral treatment and whether HCV RNA is a reliable biomarker of viral kinetics.

    • Alan S. Perelson
    •  & Jeremie Guedj
  • Review Article |

    Secretory diarrhoeas are a major cause of mortality and morbidity globally, especially in vulnerable populations such as children and the elderly. Diarrhoea has many environmental causes such as infection with bacteria or viruses, but it can also be a result of genetic defects. In this Review the authors describe the pathogenic mechanisms of secretory diarrhoea and discuss the available therapies and experimental therapies that are being developed.

    • Jay R. Thiagarajah
    • , Mark Donowitz
    •  & Alan S. Verkman
  • Review Article |

    Disease risk and treatment response is determined by an individual's complex history of genetic and environmental interactions. Personalized health care therefore requires an in-depth understanding of patient biology that can now be measured using '-omics' technologies. In this Review, different metabolic profiling methods and applications are described that might introduce a new dimension in personalized patient care in gastroenterology and hepatology.

    • Elaine Holmes
    • , Anisha Wijeyesekera
    • , Simon D. Taylor-Robinson
    •  & Jeremy K. Nicholson
  • Review Article |

    Striking placebo responses seen in randomized clinical trials have generated an interest in investigating this phenomenon in gastroenterology. Sigrid Elsenbruch and Paul Enck discuss general aspects of the placebo response relating to gastroenterology and aspects that are unique to gastrointestinal disease. This Review provides a fascinating insight into placebo research and how this phenomenon could be exploited in the future for better patient care.

    • Sigrid Elsenbruch
    •  & Paul Enck