A multicenter randomized controlled dose study of ursodeoxycholic acid for chronic hepatitis C

Hepatology. 1994 Sep;20(3):558-64.


The effect of ursodeoxycholic acid on liver function tests and on bile acid metabolism was investigated in a multi-center randomized controlled dose study for chronic hepatitis C. Twenty, 18 and 19 patients were administered 150, 600 and 900 mg/day, respectively of ursodeoxycholic acid every day for 16 wk. Serum liver parameters and bile acid composition in the treatment groups were compared with 17 control patients. A similarly significant decrease of serum alanine aminotransferase and serum gamma-glutamyltransferase was observed in patients administered 600 and 900 mg of ursodeoxycholic acid. Serum bile acid composition was determined by high-performance liquid chromatography. At entry, the relative proportions of major bile acids were similar to those observed in normal individuals. Maximal concentrations of total ursodeoxycholic acid were 0.30 mumol/L, 5.59 mumol/L, 21.42 mumol/L and 14.73 mumol/L in the control, 150, 600 and 900 mg/day groups, respectively. The fraction of the total ursodeoxycholic acid increased in a dose-dependent manner, and it was significantly higher than in controls (p < 0.001). The hydrophobicity index of bile acids was calculated by the method of Heuman, and its correlation with serum parameter levels was analyzed. In the 600 and 900 mg/day dose groups, serum alanine aminotransferase decreased in the cases in which hydrophobicity index significantly decreased during treatment. The same correlation was observed between the hydrophobicity index and serum gamma = glutamyltransferase in these two groups. There was no correlation between these parameters in the control and 150-mg groups. There was no correlation between reduction rate of serum alanine aminotransferase and initial liver histology.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Alanine Transaminase / blood
  • Bile Acids and Salts / blood
  • Chronic Disease
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Hepacivirus / genetics
  • Hepatitis C / drug therapy*
  • Hepatitis C / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osmolar Concentration
  • RNA / blood
  • Ursodeoxycholic Acid / administration & dosage*
  • Ursodeoxycholic Acid / adverse effects
  • Ursodeoxycholic Acid / therapeutic use
  • gamma-Glutamyltransferase / blood


  • Bile Acids and Salts
  • RNA
  • Ursodeoxycholic Acid
  • gamma-Glutamyltransferase
  • Alanine Transaminase