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Free Content NAT2 polymorphisms and susceptibility to anti-tuberculosis drug-induced liver injury: a meta-analysis [Review article]

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BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Although a series of studies have evaluated the potential association between N-acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2) polymorphisms and the risk of anti-tuberculosis drug-induced liver injury (ATLI), the results have generally been controversial and inadequate, mainly due to limited power. The present meta-analysis sought to resolve this problem.

DESIGN: PubMed, Embase and Web of Science were searched using the following key words: ‘N-acetyltransferase 2’ or ‘NAT2’ and ‘polymorphism’ and ‘tuberculosis’ or ‘TB’ and ‘hepatotoxicity’ or ‘liver injury’. Crude odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were summarised in forest plots and set out in a table.

RESULTS: A total of 14 studies, comprising 474 cases and 1446 controls, were included in the meta-analysis. A significant association was observed between NAT2 slow acetylators and the risk of ATLI. The OR for NAT2 slow acetylators compared with rapid acetylators was 4.697 (95%CI 3.291–6.705, P < 0.001). Subgroup analyses indicate that both Asian and non-Asian cases with slow acetylators develop ATLI more frequently, which is similar to patients with slow acetylators receiving first-line combination treatment. On comparing NAT2 intermediate acetylators with rapid acetylators, the OR for ATLI was 1.261 (95%CI 0.928–1.712, P = 0.138).

CONCLUSIONS: This meta-analysis showed that tuberculosis patients with slow acetylators had a higher risk of ATLI than other acetylators. Screening of patients for the NAT2 genetic polymorphisms will be useful for the clinical prediction and prevention of ATLI.
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Keywords: N-acetyltransferase 2; drug-induced liver injury; meta-analysis; polymorphism; tuberculosis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Binzhou Medical University, Yantai, China; School of Public Health, Shandong University, Jinan, China 2: Binzhou Medical University, Yantai, China 3: Binzhou Central Hospital, Binzhou, China 4: School of Public Health, Shandong University, Jinan, China

Publication date: 2012-05-01

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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