Copyright ©The Author(s) 2015. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Hepatol. Aug 18, 2015; 7(17): 2058-2068
Published online Aug 18, 2015. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v7.i17.2058
Intestinal barrier dysfunction in cirrhosis: Current concepts in pathophysiology and clinical implications
Georgios I Tsiaoussis, Stelios F Assimakopoulos, Athanassios C Tsamandas, Christos K Triantos, Konstantinos C Thomopoulos
Georgios I Tsiaoussis, Christos K Triantos, Konstantinos C Thomopoulos, Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University Hospital of Patras, CP 26504 Patras, Greece
Stelios F Assimakopoulos, Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital of Patras, CP 26504 Patras, Greece
Athanassios C Tsamandas, Department of Pathology, University Hospital of Patras, CP 26504 Patras, Greece
Author contributions: Tsiaoussis GI and Thomopoulos KC wrote the paper, conceptualized and designated the work; Assimakopoulos SF, Tsamandas AC and Triantos CK critically revised the paper.
Conflict-of-interest statement: None of the authors have any conflict of interest related to this work.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
Correspondence to: Georgios I Tsiaoussis, MD, Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University Hospital of Patras, Rio Patras, CP 26504 Patras, Greece. tsiaoussisgeorgios@yahoo.com
Telephone: +30-2610-992861 Fax: +30-2610-992861
Received: February 25, 2015
Peer-review started: February 26, 2015
First decision: May 14, 2015
Revised: June 22, 2015
Accepted: June 30, 2015
Article in press: July 2, 2015
Published online: August 18, 2015
Core Tip

Core tip: Intestinal barrier function is impaired in patients with cirrhosis and this derangement seems to be associated with liver disease severity. This phenomenon is multifactorial and the exact pathophysiological mechanisms which are implicated in this deterioration have not been fully elucidated yet. The disruption of intestinal barrier integrity and the subsequent increased intestinal permeability in cirrhotic patients promote bacterial translocation and play a major role in the development of severe clinical complications affecting natural history of liver disease and patients’ survival.