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Electrical impedance tomography for non-invasive identification of fatty liver infiltrate in overweight individuals

Chang, Chih-Chiang and Huang, Zi-Yu and Shih, Shu-Fu and Luo, Yuan and Ko, Arthur and Cui, Qingyu and Sumner, Jennifer and Cavallero, Susana and Das, Swarna and Gao, Wei and Sinsheimer, Janet and Bui, Alex and Jacobs, Jonathan P. and Pajukanta, Päivi and Wu, Holden and Tai, Yu-Chong and Li, Zhaoping and Hsiai, Tzung K. (2021) Electrical impedance tomography for non-invasive identification of fatty liver infiltrate in overweight individuals. Scientific Reports, 11 . Art. No. 19859. ISSN 2045-2322. PMCID PMC8494919. doi:10.1038/s41598-021-99132-z.

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Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most common causes of cardiometabolic diseases in overweight individuals. While liver biopsy is the current gold standard to diagnose NAFLD and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive alternative still under clinical trials, the former is invasive and the latter costly. We demonstrate electrical impedance tomography (EIT) as a portable method for detecting fatty infiltrate. We enrolled 19 overweight subjects to undergo liver MRI scans, followed by EIT measurements. The MRI images provided the a priori knowledge of the liver boundary conditions for EIT reconstruction, and the multi-echo MRI data quantified liver proton-density fat fraction (PDFF%) to validate fat infiltrate. Using the EIT electrode belts, we circumferentially injected pairwise current to the upper abdomen, followed by acquiring the resulting surface-voltage to reconstruct the liver conductivity. Pearson’s correlation analyses compared EIT conductivity or MRI PDFF with body mass index, age, waist circumference, height, and weight variables. We reveal that the correlation between liver EIT conductivity or MRI PDFF with demographics is statistically insignificant, whereas liver EIT conductivity is inversely correlated with MRI PDFF (R = −0.69, p = 0.003, n = 16). As a pilot study, EIT conductivity provides a portable method for operator-independent and cost-effective detection of hepatic steatosis.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle Paper
Ko, Arthur0000-0002-1523-7225
Sumner, Jennifer0000-0002-0217-7171
Cavallero, Susana0000-0001-5402-8840
Gao, Wei0000-0002-8503-4562
Sinsheimer, Janet0000-0001-9540-5956
Jacobs, Jonathan P.0000-0003-4698-0254
Pajukanta, Päivi0000-0002-6423-8056
Wu, Holden0000-0002-2585-5916
Tai, Yu-Chong0000-0001-8529-106X
Hsiai, Tzung K.0000-0003-1734-0792
Alternate Title:Liver Electrical Impedance Tomography for Early Identification of Fatty Infiltrate in Obesity
Additional Information:© The Author(s) 2021. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit Received 01 June 2021; Accepted 16 September 2021; Published 06 October 2021. The present work was funded by the National Institutes of Health R01HL083015 (TKH), R01HL111437 (TKH), R01HL129727 (TKH), R01HL118650 (TKH), VA MERIT AWARD I01 BX004356 (TKH), and American Heart Association 19CDA34769186 (AK). Data availability: The authors declare that the main data supporting the findings of this study are available within the article and its Supporting Information files. Extra data are available from the corresponding author on a reasonable request. These authors contributed equally: Chih-Chiang Chang and Zi-Yu Huang. Author Contributions: C.C, Z.H, Y.L, and Y.C.T conducted the EIT reconstructions and analyses. Z.L. provided the clinical support for patient recruitment, liver MRI and PDFF. S.S, H.W, C.C, and S.D performed the MRI imaging and PDFF analyses. C.C, S.S, Z.H, Y.L, Q.C, and A.K, performed the EIT measurement following liver MRI scans. S.C, and Z.L prepared the IRB approval to recruit and coordinate the subjects for the MRI scans. T.K.H led the conception of liver EIT, the overall direction, and manuscript preparation with H.W, P.P, J.J, W.G, J. S, and A.B. All authors reviewed the manuscript. The authors declare no competing interests.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Veterans AffairsI01 BX004356
American Heart Association19CDA34769186
Subject Keywords:Biomedical engineering; Engineering
PubMed Central ID:PMC8494919
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20201222-143554115
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Chang, CC., Huang, ZY., Shih, SF. et al. Electrical impedance tomography for non-invasive identification of fatty liver infiltrate in overweight individuals. Sci Rep 11, 19859 (2021).
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:107260
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:22 Dec 2020 22:58
Last Modified:28 Oct 2021 16:31

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