Increasing nonalcoholic steatohepatitis overlap in liver transplant recipients: Additive risk for de novo malignancy

Navine Nasser-Ghodsi, Kristin Mara, Alina M. Allen, Kymberly D. Watt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and aims: Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is associated with metabolic conditions that increase the risk of de novo malignancy following transplant. Patients often have more than one underlying liver disease, which could change the risk of de novo malignancy. This study assessed the incidence of NASH overlap and its effect on de novo malignancy in liver transplant recipients. Methods: Data was analyzed from the United Network for Organ Sharing database for all liver transplant recipients from 1997 to 2017 for NASH alone or in combination with another liver disease. Results: There is an increasing prevalence of NASH overlap. Of the 98,679 patients included in the analysis, 1238 had a de novo malignancy identified (7.4% by 5 years post-transplant). The cumulative incidence of de novo malignancy increases in primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC)/NASH overlap after 5 years and was increased in alcohol-related liver disease (ALD)/NASH through 10 years compared to ether disease alone. NASH overlaps with “other” diseases experience a cumulative incidence similar to NASH and not the “other” disease. An increased risk of de novo solid organ malignancy was associated with older age, male gender, previous malignancy, and multiorgan transplant. Conclusion: The prevalence of liver transplant recipients with NASH overlap is increasing. These patients may experience different long-term outcomes than patients with either diagnosis alone. De novo malignancy risk can be influenced by multiple factors and metabolic comorbidities. Further study of patients with overlap diagnoses is important moving forward to guide individualized care and cancer screening programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere14714
JournalClinical Transplantation
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2022


  • NASH
  • alcohol-related liver disease
  • cancer
  • fatty liver
  • immunosuppression
  • primary sclerosing cholangitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation


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