Hepatitis B

Correlation between Traditional Chinese Medicine symptom patterns and serum concentration of zinc, iron, copper and magnesium in patients with hepatitis B and associated liver cirrhosis.



To investigate the correlation between the patterns of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) syndromes and the serum concentration of zinc, iron, copper and magnesium of patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) and hepatitis B virus (HBV)-induced liver cirrhosis.


A total of 86 patients were included in the study between March 1, 2009 and January 1, 2010. All were diagnosed with CHB or HBV-induced liver cirrhosis according to the diagnosis standard of the Chinese Medical Association. Fasting serum concentrations of zinc, iron, copper and magnesium were measured. Patients were classified into different patterns of TCM symptoms according to TCM theory and clinical experience.


In the HBV-induced liver cirrhosis group, the mean zinc concentration in patients with the TCM pattern of stagnation of fluid-Dampness was lower than that in patients with obstruction of collaterals by Blood stasis (P < 0.034). In the CHB group, the mean magnesium concentration in patients with toxic Heat flourishing was significantly lower than that in those with Damp-Heat in the Liver and Gallbladder, and those with Liver depression and Spleen deficiency (P < 0.021). The concentrations of iron and copper showed little difference among the different TCM symptom patterns.


The serum zinc and magnesium concentrations correlated with certain TCM patterns of symptoms in patients with HBV-induced liver cirrhosis and CHB. It may be helpful to interpret the pathogenic change in the TCM symptom patterns in liver cirrhosis and CHB, and also to conduct clinical treatment of the diseases based on identified TCM patterns.

Integrating clinical indexes into four-diagnostic information contributes to the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) syndrome diagnosis of chronic hepatitis B.


Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treatment has been commonly used to treat Chronic Hepatitis B (CHB) in Asian countries based on TCM syndrome diagnosis, also called “ZHENG”. The syndrome is identified through the four-diagnostic methods, with certain degree of subjectivity and ambiguity from individual doctors. Normally those CHB patients also receive series of parameters from modern clinical examination, while they are routinely believed to be unrelated with the TCM syndrome diagnosis. In this study, we investigated whether these biomedical indexes in modern medicine could be beneficial to TCM syndrome diagnostics in an integrative way. Based on 634 patient samples from health controls and three subtypes of CHB syndromes, a two-view based hierarchical classification model was tested for TCM syndromes prediction based on totally 222 parameters integrated from both TCM practice and modern clinical tests. The results indicated that the performance of syndrome classification based on a proper integration of TCM and modern clinical indexes was significantly higher than those based on one view of parameters only. Furthermore, those indexes correlated with CHB syndrome diagnosis were successfully identified for CM indexes and biochemical indexes respectively, where potential associations between them were hinted to the MAPK signaling pathway.