Risk Factors for the Development of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis, Including Genetics

Clin Liver Dis. 2018 Feb;22(1):39-57. doi: 10.1016/j.cld.2017.08.008. Epub 2017 Oct 6.


Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is emerging as the most common cause of chronic liver disease worldwide. This trend is, in part, secondary, to the growing incidence of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. Other risk factors include age, gender, race/ethnicity, genetic predisposition, and polycystic ovarian disease. With the introduction of genome-wide association studies, genetic mutations contributing to inherited susceptibility to steatosis have been identified, which hold keys to future improvement in diagnosis and management. This article expands on the aforementioned risk factors and summarizes the current available data on genetic and environmental factors associated with this common entity.

Keywords: Genetics; NAFLD; NASH; Risk factors.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / genetics
  • Asian People
  • Black or African American
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Insulin Receptor Substrate Proteins / genetics
  • Kruppel-Like Factor 6 / genetics
  • Lipase / genetics
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / epidemiology*
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / ethnology
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / genetics*
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome / epidemiology
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • White People


  • IRS1 protein, human
  • Insulin Receptor Substrate Proteins
  • KLF6 protein, human
  • Kruppel-Like Factor 6
  • Membrane Proteins
  • TM6SF2 protein, human
  • Acyltransferases
  • MBOAT7 protein, human
  • Lipase
  • adiponutrin, human