Research: LAMMERT and MATERN,

Listed in Issue 110


LAMMERT and MATERN, Medizinische Klinik III, Universitatsklinikum Aachen, RWTH Aachen, Aachen, Germany, have reviewed (no references) the evidence base for the prevention of gallstones.


Abstract: Cholesterol cholelithiasis (gallstones) is one of the most common and expensive gastrointestinal diseases. Beside common risk factors, recent molecular genetic studies have identified genetic risk factors for both cholesterol and pigment stone formation. Examples are low phospholipid-associated cholelithiasis due to mutations of the gene encoding an enzyme called the hepatocanalicular phosphatidylcholine transporter, and pigment stones in association with mutations of the ileal bile salt transporter gene. Evidence-based options for primary prevention of cholecystolithiasis include physical activity, slow weight reduction, regular vitamin C supplementation, and moderate coffee consumption. The ongoing genome projects are expected to provide the basis for future epidemiological studies of human gallstone (LITH) genes, which might offer new prospects for individual risk assessment and prevention of gallstones.





Lammert F, Matern S. Evidence-based prevention of cholecystolithiasis. Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 129 (28-29): 1548-1550, Jul 9, 2004.


Next time that you hear of a scurrilous scare that vitamin C might cause gallstones, please remember that one of the gallstone prevention options cited in this research was vitamin C supplementation.

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