A randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial of hydrogen/oxygen inhalation for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common chronic liver disease worldwide with increasing incidence consistent with obesity, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. No approved medication was currently available for NAFLD treatment. Molecular hydrogen (H2 ), an anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory biomedical agent is proved to exhibit therapeutic and preventive effect in various diseases. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of hydrogen/oxygen inhalation on NAFLD subjects and explore the mechanism from the perspective of hepatocyte autophagy. We conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial of 13-week hydrogen/oxygen inhalation (China Clinical Trial Registry [#ChiCTR-IIR-16009114]) including 43 subjects. We found that inhalation of hydrogen/oxygen improved serum lipid and liver enzymes. Significantly improved liver fat content detected by ultrasound and CT scans after hydrogen/oxygen inhalation was observed in moderate-severe cases. We also performed an animal experiment based on methionine and choline-deficient (MCD) diet-induced mice model to investigate effect of hydrogen on mouse NASH. Hydrogen/oxygen inhalation improved systemic inflammation and liver histology. Promoted autophagy was observed in mice inhaled hydrogen/oxygen and treatment with chloroquine blocked the beneficial effect of hydrogen. Moreover, molecular hydrogen inhibited lipid accumulation in AML-12 cells. Autophagy induced by palmitic acid (PA) incubation was further promoted by 20% hydrogen incubation. Addition of 3-methyladenine (3-MA) partially blocked the inhibitory effect of hydrogen on intracellular lipid accumulation. Collectively, hydrogen/oxygen inhalation alleviated NAFLD in moderate-severe patients. This protective effect of hydrogen was possibly by activating hepatic autophagy. Keywords: MCD-induced NASH; NAFLD; autoph

Hydrogen alleviates acute lung injury induced by limb ischaemia/reperfusion in mice

Aims: Limb ischaemia/reperfusion (LIR) occurs in various clinical conditions including critical limb ischaemia, abdominal aortic aneurysm, and traumatic arterial injury. Reperfusion of the acutely ischemic limb can lead to a systemic inflammation response and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome, further resulting in significant morbidity and mortality. Molecular hydrogen exhibits therapeutic activity for the treatment and prevention of many diseases. Our study investigated the possible therapeutic effects of hydrogen and its mechanism of action in a LIR-induced acute lung injury (ALI) model. Materials and methods: Limb ischaemia/-reperfusion model was established in mice. The hydrogen-saturated saline was administered by intraperitoneal injection. Protein level of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), haem oxygenase-1 (HO1) and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1) was evaluated by immunohistochemistry staining and western blotting. Autophagy-related molecules were evaluated by western blotting. Malondialdehyde (MDA) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) were determined by assay kits. Quantification of ceramides in lung was performed by high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Key findings: Molecular hydrogen exhibited a protective effect on the LIR-induced ALI model. Hydrogen decreased malondialdehyde and increased superoxide dismutase activity in lung tissues. Additionally, hydrogen activated Nrf2 signalling in lung tissues. Hydrogen could inhibit the upregulation of autophagy in the present rodent model. Furthermore, ceramide was accumulated in lung tissues because of LIR; however, hydrogen altered the accumulation status. Significance: Molecular hydrogen was found to be therapeutically effective in the LIR-induced ALI model; the mechanisms of action included modulation of antioxidation and autophagy.