Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Summary We report the first detailed study of hepatic morphlogy in 28 biopsies from 16 Greenland Eskimo children with fatal familial cholestatic syndrome. The changes were categorized as early, intermediate and late. In the early stage, until 5 months of age, changes were restricted to zone 3, consisting of cholestasis and rosette formation without fibrosis. In the intermediate stage, from 5 to 14 months, cholestasis persisted and rosette formation increased, both with further extension into zone 2. Perisinusoidal fibrosis developed, first in zone 3 and later in zone 1. The late stage, from 17 to 60 months, showed a further increase in cholestasis and rosette formation, and fibrosis of zones 3 and 1 in nearly all biopsies. Portal to portal and portal to central fibrosis was evident with resulting cirrhosis in 2 of 7 patients. The morphological features can be summarized as pure cholestasis with prominent rosette formation followed by zone 3 fibrosis, zone 1 fibrosis, and, cirrhosis. Other characteristics are the virtual absence of inflammation and the lack of anatomical abnormalities such as paucity of bile ducts. The changes and their progression resemble those of Byler disease. Clinical and biochemical features are also largely similar, except for the presence of thrombocytosis in many of the Eskimo patients.
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