Prevention of diet-induced fatty liver in experimental animals by the oral administration of a fatty acid bile acid conjugate (FABAC)

Hepatology. 2003 Aug;38(2):436-42. doi: 10.1053/jhep.2003.50348.


Fatty acid bile acid conjugates (FABACs) are a new family of synthetic molecules designed to solubilize biliary cholesterol. They were shown to prevent and dissolve cholesterol gallstones in inbred C57L/J mice fed a lithogenic, high-fat diet (HFD). In these mice, fatty liver was observed in the controls but not in the FABAC-treated ones. The present study was designed to study the effect of FABAC (arachidyl-amido-cholanoic acid) on diet-induced fatty liver in rats, hamsters, and mice. The fatty liver score (on a scale of 0-4 by light microscopy) was 4.0 in control hamsters and 0.3 in the FABAC-fed hamsters (P <.001). In mice it was 1.5 and 0.4, respectively (P <.01). The lipid/protein ratio in the liver was 1.3 +/- 0.44 (mg lipid/mg protein) in control rats and 0.66 +/- 0.04 in the FABAC group (P =.001) after 14 days. In hamsters it was 1.41 +/- 0.27 and 1.11 +/- 0.20, respectively (P =.03), after 21 days. In Imperial Charles River (ICR) mice the ratio was 0.34 +/- 0.10 and 0.17 +/- 0.07 (P =.03), respectively, after 24 days. Liver fat concentration, measured as mg lipid/g liver tissue, decreased similarly by FABAC feeding. The decrease in liver fat affected mainly the triglyceride levels. FABAC-fed animals gained weight similarly to the controls. Triglyceride absorption was unaffected by FABAC supplementation. In conclusion, oral FABAC therapy prevents/reduces the development of fatty liver in animals consuming a HFD.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Bile Acids and Salts / pharmacology*
  • Body Weight
  • Cholic Acids
  • Cricetinae
  • Dietary Fats / pharmacokinetics
  • Fatty Liver / drug therapy*
  • Fatty Liver / pathology
  • Fatty Liver / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Mesocricetus
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Inbred ICR
  • Mice, Mutant Strains
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Triglycerides / pharmacokinetics
  • Triolein / pharmacokinetics
  • Tritium


  • Bile Acids and Salts
  • Cholic Acids
  • Dietary Fats
  • Triglycerides
  • Tritium
  • Triolein
  • aramchol