6-Thiaguanine (6-TG) has been proposed as an alternative thiopurine to those, such as 6-mercatopurine and azathioprine, currently used to treat inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Initial safety and efficacy studies of 6-TG as a therapy for IBD have yielded favorable results.
However, experience with 6-TG in patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia raised long-term safety concerns when implicated in nodular regenerative hyperplasia of the liver and portal hypertension
This latest study conducted by a team at the Mount-Sinai Medical Center in California followed 111 IBD patients who had been treated with 6-TG.
| The progression or reversibility of NRH remains unknown |
Liver chemistries and complete blood counts revealed abnormalities in 29 out of 111 patients. Elevations of liver enzymes and a decrease in platelet count were most commonly observed.
Liver biopsy in these patients showed 76% to have nodular regenerative hyperplasia of the liver. Of the patients with normal lab results who underwent liver biopsy 33 % were found to have nodular regenerative hyperplasia.
The authors of the study conclude that 6-TG should not be considered for therapy in patients with IBD.