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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2015, Article ID 278785, 7 pages
Research Article

Presence of Fatty Liver and the Relationship between Alcohol Consumption and Markers of Inflammation

1Department of Internal Medicine II (Cardiology, Angiology, Pulmonology, Sports, and Rehabilitation Medicine), University of Ulm Medical Centre, Albert-Einstein-Allee 23, 89081 Ulm, Germany
2Department of Internal Medicine I (Gastroenterology, Endocrinology, and Nephrology), University of Ulm Medical Centre, Albert-Einstein-Allee 23, 89081 Ulm, Germany

Received 8 December 2014; Accepted 2 February 2015

Academic Editor: Jan G. C. van Amsterdam

Copyright © 2015 Martin Kächele et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background and Aims. Local and systemic inflammation represent a major feature of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) and are also linked to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Studies indicate that NAFLD might be a risk factor for CVD whereas low-to-moderate alcohol consumption is associated with lower cardiovascular morbidity and mortality compared to abstainers and heavy drinkers. We hypothesize that FLD interacts with the effect of alcohol intake on markers of inflammation, and thus potentially on cardiovascular risk. Methods and Results. We evaluated alcohol consumption, markers of inflammation and sonographic criteria of FLD in 515 subjects, representing a subsample of a cross-sectional population based study (Echinococcus multilocularis and Internal Diseases in Leutkirch (EMIL) Study). Presence of FLD was markedly reduced in subjects drinking 0–20 g alcohol/d (19%), compared to nondrinkers (35%) and heavy drinkers (34–44.9%). Serum concentrations of inflammatory markers were substantially higher in subjects with FLD. However, presence of FLD showed no effect on the association between alcohol consumption and inflammatory biomarkers. Conclusions. Based on data from a population-based sample, there is no evidence for a link between FLD, alcohol consumption, and inflammatory cardiovascular risk markers. However, larger prospective studies are needed to confirm this.