Genetics of MAFLD

We offer a selection of interactive, web-based, educational resources designed by experts to help improve your daily practice. Helps practitioners in Hepatology to keep up with continuing medical education (CME) at their own pace.

Learn the Genetics of MAFLD

If you’re living with MAFLD, you probably have a lot of questions. You’ve probably wondered how you developed MAFLD. You may worry that your children will develop it, too. You’re not the only one asking these questions—and we are here to help.


Metabolic dysfunction Associated Fatty Liver Disease (MAFLD) is a complex medical condition that can be influenced by a diverse range of genetic and environmental factors. Although the precise genetic mechanisms underlying MAFLD remain incompletely understood, research has identified several genes that may contribute to the development and progression of the disease. These genes are involved in lipid metabolism, inflammation, and insulin resistance, all of which are known to be significant contributors to MAFLD.

Furthermore, specific genetic variations may heighten an individual’s susceptibility to MAFLD and its associated complications. It is important to note, however, that genetics is only one of numerous factors that can contribute to MAFLD, and lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise also play a substantial role in the development and management of the disease. Some examples of these genes include Variations in PNPLA3 that have been found to be particularly common in individuals of Hispanic ancestry and thought to be involved in lipid metabolism and the accumulation of fat in the liver. Another genes include TM6SF2, MBOAT7 and HSD17B13.

Your Child’s Risk

MAFLD runs in families. In part, this is due to children learning bad habits—eating a poor diet, not exercising—from their parents. However, there is also a genetic basis. The good news is, like in adults, it is possible to reverse or prevent MAFLD in youth by encouraging healthy food choices, exercise and weight loss. Learn about MAFLD prevention.

More Information on Genetics

If you would like to learn more about the genetics of MAFLD, our journal has published https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12072-015-9689-y. This online article provides an overview of the current knowledge about the genetics of fatty liver disease. The article is written for health care professionals and for people with MAFLD interested in learning more about the disease.