The epidemics of overweight and obesity has resulted in a significant increase of non alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a potentially progressive condition. Currently, obesity related hepatopathy represents therefore the main cause of pediatric chronic liver disease. The first choice treatment at all ages is weight loss and/or lifestyle changes, however compliance is very poor and a pharmacological approach has become necessary. In the present article we present a systematic literature review focusing on established pediatric NALFD drugs (ursodeoxycholic acid, insulin sensitizers, and antioxidants) and on innovative therapeutic options as well. Regarding the former ones, a pediatric pilot study highlighted that ursodeoxycholic acid is not efficient on ransaminases levels and bright liver. Similarly, a recent large scale, multicenter randomized clinical trial (TONIC study) showed that also insulin sensitizers and antioxidant vitamin E have scarce effects on serum transaminase levels. Among a large series of novel therapeutic approaches acting on recently proposed different pathomechanisms, probiotics seem hitherto the most interesting and reasonable option for their safety and tolerability. Toll-like receptors modifiers, Pentoxifylline, and Farnesoid X receptors agonists have been still poorly investigated, and will need further studies before becoming possible promising innovative therapeutic strategies.
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