In this study, researchers from the Republic of Korea examined the relationship between normal range of serum aminotransferase concentration and mortality from liver disease.
The team performed a prospective cohort study with 8 years follow-up.
They included 94,533 men and 47,522 women aged between 35 and 59 years.
The team measures mortality from liver diseases according to the death certificate.
|Cut-off values in men were 31 IU/l for aspartate aminotransferase and 30 IU/l for alanine aminotransferase.|
|British Medical Journal|
The researchers found that there was a positive association between aminotransferase concentration, even within normal range (35 to 40 IU/l), and mortality from liver disease.
When compared with a concentration of < 20 IU/l, the team found that the adjusted relative risks for an aspartate aminotransferase concentration of 20 to 29 IU/l were 2.5 for men and 3.3 for women.
For a concentration of 30 to 39 IU/l, the relative risks were 8 for men and 18.2 for women.
The researchers calculated the risks associated with alanine aminotransferase concentration of < 20 IU/l were 2.9 for men and 3.8 for women.
For a concentration of 20 to 29 IU/l the risks were 9.5 for men and 6.6 for women.
The team determined that the best cut-off values for the prediction of liver disease in men were 31 IU/l for aspartate aminotransferase and 30 IU/l for alanine aminotransferase.
Dr Hyeon Chang Kim and colleagues concluded, "People with slightly increased aminotransferase activity, but still within the normal range, should be closely observed and further investigated for liver diseases".