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Indexed/Abstracted in: BIOSIS Previews, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,6
Online ISSN 1827-1898
Barbacini I. G., Goldoni E., De Sanctis G. M., Margiotta M. C., Sebastiano D., D'Errico D. A. F., Altavilla N., Magnapera A., Rivanera D.*, Lilli D.*, Ippoliti F.**, Grimaldi F., Mancini C.*, Chircu L. V.
From the Viral Hepatitis Unit, Department of Infectious and Tropical Diseases * Institute of Microbiology ** Department of Experimental Medicine and Pathology University “La Sapienza”, Rome, Italy
Background. Aim of the study was to assess the correlation between clincal stage of HCV-related liver disease and viraemia to immune response to different viral antigens.
Methods. We considered 1330 patients with HCV chronic infection followed up from 6 months up to 6 years divided into two groups according to RIBA 3 (Abbott) response: Group I, 1231 patients with positivity for at least two bands (83 subjects with asymptomatic infection, 941 with chronic hepatitis, 201 with cirrhosis and 6 with HCC); Group II, 99 patients with positivity at only one band (45 with asymptomatic infection, 53 with chronic hepatitis and 1 cirrhotic).
Results. We noticed a major percentage of positive patients for at least three bands in more severe clinical forms (90% of chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis versus 60% of asymptomatics, p<0.005, χ2 test). Moreover we noticed a percentage increase of positivity for antibodies anti-c100 and anti-NS5 with the progression of liver damage, statistically significant differences between asymptomatics and patients with chronic forms. We also observed that viraemia is related neither to clinical stage nor to different reactivity to RIBA 3, albeit viraemia is usually detected more frequently among patients with liver damage, but unrelated to different reactivities.
Conclusions. Our results show a clear correlation between number of reactivities towards HCV proteins and progression of liver damage, pointing out that immune response plays a direct role in the long-term outcome of HCV infection.