Liver transplant may be the answer for a rare
disorder called lathosterolosis, statesa case report published online by the American Journal of Transplantation.
Lathosterolosis is a rare disorder with currently
only one living patient diagnosed with the condition. It occurs due to a defect
and leaves the patient with multiple congenital anomalies,
mental retardation and liver failure.
Dr Pier Luigi Calvo of the Cittá della Salute e
della Scienza in Italy and his colleagues did a liver transplant in the only
living girl with the condition when she progressed to liver failure by the ages
of 7 years. Prior to this, the girl already suffered from autistic
with walking and cataract
in the eyes.
Following the transplantation, cholesterol synthesis
in the girl returned to normal within a year and her walking improved. Further
deterioration in her mental state stopped around five years after the
The physicians thus suggest that there is a link
between the normal functioning of the liver and the brain. Diseases related to
abnormal cholesterol metabolism which are associated with abnormal brain
functioning can probably be managed by timely intervention in the form of liver
. However, the transplantation may not be able to
reverse the mental changes that have already occurred.
Liver transplant is commonly done for conditions that cause extensive
liver damage. These include hepatitis
and C infections, alcoholic liver
. Drugs which suppress immunity
are given following the
transplant to prevent rejection.