Recognized by AASLD for conducting research of high clinical importance to support transformative care.
LINKÖPING, Sweden; November 13, 2019 – AMRA Medical’s research is regarded as highly valuable by AASLD; the abstract titled “On the Definition of Sarcopenia Within NAFLD – Results from the Large UK Biobank Imaging Study” has been selected for inclusion in the “Best of The Liver Meeting” slide-deck to be highlighted and for public distribution following The Liver Meeting 2019 in Boston. AMRA Medical is dedicated to supporting transformative care and vital decision-making from clinical research to health and wellness; AASLD highlighting this research is an honor that will expand AMRA’s reach to healthcare professionals.
Sarcopenia – the gradual loss of muscle mass and function – is one of the most common complications related to survival of patients with cirrhosis and commonly observed in end stage liver disease. However, current literature does not clearly describe the role of sarcopenia in earlier stages of NAFLD/NASH. Muscle mass and function are influenced by numerous factors such as age, weight, fitness, pain and disease, making it difficult to accurately assess sarcopenia. Further, recent research reports that latest consensus definitions for sarcopenia (based on DXA estimated appendicular lean mass and hand grip strength)1,2 underestimates sarcopenia within obesity3 and does not take muscle quality into account.
AMRA’s recent study reports that the prevalence of sarcopenia within NAFLD (according to current sarcopenia definitions) was significantly lower when compared to that of participants without fatty liver, while the prevalence of low function was higher. It further exposes a novel MRI-based method for combined assessment of fat-free muscle volume and fat infiltration to identify individuals with low functional performance in varying BMI classes and within NAFLD.
In the study, it was suggested that to enable physicians to deliver the best possible care, combined muscle assessments must be adjusted to account for confounding factors, such as obesity, and be used throughout the course of the disease.
The method was applied to 9,615 participants in the UK Biobank imaging sub-study, each sex-and-BMI-matched with an individualized virtual control group. Hospital nights, low hand grip strength, slow walking pace, lack of stair climbing, and number of falls were associated with high muscle fat infiltration and in most cases with low fat-free muscle volume. AMRA found that combining fat-free muscle volume with muscle fat infiltration and incorporating virtual control groups resulted in the highest diagnostic performance for detecting low functional performance and properly adjusted muscle volume for BMI enabling objective sarcopenia assessment within NAFLD.
This research shows the potential future use of AMRA’s innovative method and may;
- Serve as a framework for clinicians and researchers to objectively detect sarcopenia-related problems using quantifiable MR imaging biomarkers.
- Be utilized throughout the life of a patient, when they are unable to perform physical functionality tests.
- Serve as a standardized approach, enabling cross-study comparisons, to further the field of sarcopenia research leading to better treatment for patients with liver disease.
This research was presented in detail through an oral presentation at AASLD’s The Liver Meeting and highlighted in the “Best of The Liver Meeting” slide deck. View the slide deck here.
Read our news article and view the introduction video to our recent published publication “On the Definition of Sarcopenia in the Presence of Aging and Obesity—Initial Results from UK Biobank” and read more about our research, AMRA Medical, and AMRA’s technology.
- Cruz-Jentoft AJ, Bahat G, Bauer J, et al. Sarcopenia: Revised European Consensus on Definition and Diagnosis. Age Ageing 2019;48(1):16–31.
- Studenski SA, Peters KW, Alley DE, et al. The FNIH Sarcopenia Project: Rationale, Study Description, Conference Recommendations, and Final Estimates. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2014;69(5):547–558.
- Linge J, Heymsfield SB, Dahlqvist Leinhard O. On the Definition of Sarcopenia in the Presence of Aging and Obesity – Initial Results from UK Biobank. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2019 (in press). doi: https://doi.org/10.1093/gerona/glz229.
About AMRA Medical
AMRA (www.amramedical.com) is a groundbreaking international digital health company at the forefront of medical imaging and precision medicine. The company has developed a new global standard in body composition assessment, the ability to automatically produce multiple fat and muscle biomarkers with unrivaled precision and accuracy, as well as contextual disease insights – all from a single, rapid, whole-body MRI. AMRA was founded in 2010 as a spin-off of Linköping University, Sweden, with the aim to support transformative care and vital decision-making from clinical research to health and wellness.
SVP Global BD & Marketing
About UK Biobank
UK Biobank (www.ukbiobank.ac.uk) is a major national and international health resource with the aim of improving the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses. In 2006-2010, UK Biobank recruited 500,000 people between the ages of 40–69 years old from across the country. The project has permission to follow participants’ health through medical records. UK Biobank has also embarked on a major project to MRI scan the vital internal organs and body composition of 100,000 participants. Over many years, this detailed data will build a powerful resource to help scientists discover why some people develop particular diseases and others do not, and to suggest new ways of preventing and treating them.
Head of Communications