The hepatic extracellular matrix (ECM) is rich in different collagens, proteoglycans, and matricellular proteins. In alcohol-related liver disease, the disruption of the balance between degradation and formation of collagens results in ECM remodeling with net formation (build-up and scar formation) of the tissue.
We have identified twenty types of collagens of relevance for liver health. These collagens have different structures and are distributed in different compartments of the ECM, therefore, have specific functions in the tissue. The dynamics of collagen turnover in alcohol-related liver fibrosis can be investigated using our biomarkers for the formation (PRO-C3, PRO-C4, PRO-C5, PRO-C6) and degradation (C3M, C4M, C5M, and C6M) of collagens.
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