Relationship of circulating total bilirubin, UDP-glucuronosyltransferases 1A1 and the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: a cross-sectional study

This study aimed to investigate the correlation of circulating total bilirubin (TB) and UGT1A1 with NAFLD in Chinese Han population.

172 adults were enrolled from the Qingdao Municipal Hospital from May 2019 to October 2020. All individuals were examined with MRI-PDFF and divided into no steatosis, mild steatosis, moderate steatosis, and severe steatosis groups according to the MRI-PDFF values. The biochemical indexes and UGT1A1 were measured.

There was no significant difference of circulating TB and UGT1A1 levels between NAFLD group and controls. In the moderate steatosis and severe steatosis groups, the circulating TB levels were higher than that in control group (all P < 0.05). In addition, circulating TB levels were weak positively associated with liver fat fraction in NAFLD patients (ρ = 0.205, P = 0.001). There was no significant correlation between circulating UGT1A1 levels with liver fat fraction in patients with NAFLD (ρ = 0.080, P = 0.179), but positively correlation was found in patients with severe steatosis (ρ = 0.305, P = 0.026).

The circulating TB levels were significant high in patients with moderate and severe steatosis. Circulating TB levels were weakly associated with liver fat fraction in patients with NAFLD, and the circulating UGT1A1 levels were positively correlated with liver fat fraction in NAFLD patients with severe steatosis.