Ethiopia is one of the countries with the highest incidence of tuberculosis in the world. An important problem in treatment is the development of drug-toxic hepatitis, i.e. liver inflammation caused by the tuberculosis drugs. This complicates the therapy in up to one third of patients, especially with pre-existing liver diseases and liver-toxic concomitant medication (e.g. HIV medication). In this case, the tuberculosis therapy often has to be interrupted, with the consequence of a poorer response or progression of the disease and possibly the development of resistance.
In this study, which was funded by the Research Commission of the University Hospital Düsseldorf for 2 years, the frequency of this complication as well as the effects on the success of the therapy, but above all the risk factors were investigated. According to recent findings, polymorphisms (genetic variants) of bile salt transporters could play an important role here; a number of these polymorphisms were investigated in this study.