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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Panminerva Medica 2002 December;44(4):353-7

language: English

Immune status and autoantibody formation in children with chronic hepatitis B infection

Unal F., Genel F., Ozgenc F., Aksu G., Aydogdu S., Kutukculer N., Yagci R. V.

Department of Pediatric Immunology and Pediatric Gastroenterology, Ege University Faculty of Medicine, Izmir, Turkey


Background. The hep­a­titis B ­virus (HBV) caus­es a ­wide spec­trum of dis­ease ­which rang­es ­from ­acute hep­a­titis to liv­er cir­rho­sis. Patients who ­fail to ­mount a vig­or­ous ­immune ­response in ­acute HBV devel­op chron­ic infec­tion. Therefore, the aim of the ­study was to deter­mine the cel­lu­lar and humo­ral ­immune param­e­ters of the ­patients ­with chron­ic HBV and to eval­u­ate the prev­a­lence of auto­an­ti­bod­ies ­before the begin­ning of immu­no­mod­u­la­tor and anti­vi­ral ther­a­py.
Methods. In ­this com­par­a­tive ­study, ser­um immu­no­glob­u­lins, IgG sub­class­es, secre­to­ry IgA, ser­um com­ple­ment com­po­nents, lym­pho­cyte sub­sets and CD11a, CD18, CD54 mole­cules on lym­pho­cytes ­were deter­mined in 44 hos­pi­tal­ized ­patients of chron­ic HBV infec­tion and 20 cas­es of ­healthy con­trol sub­jects.
Results. Significant ­increase in IgG and sig­nif­i­cant ­decrease in the com­ple­ment C4 ­were ­observed. The ­mean per­cent­age of CD3+ lym­pho­cytes, reflect­ing the per­cent­age of ­total T ­cells was sig­nif­i­cant­ly high­er in the ­patient ­group due to the ­increase of CD8+ lym­pho­cytes. The ­mean per­cent­age of CD19+ B lym­pho­cytes was low­er in the ­patient ­group sec­on­dary to the ­increase of ­their ­total T ­cells. No sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence was ­found in ­cell sur­face adhe­sion mole­cules ­between ­patient and con­trol ­groups. The per­cent­age of anti­nu­cle­ar anti­body pos­i­tiv­ity was 18.2%.
Conclusions. Our ­data ­show ­that ANA for­ma­tion is ­part of the nat­u­ral ­course of chron­ic HBV infec­tion and ­this val­ue may ­reflect the ten­den­cy to auto­im­mune dis­eas­es and the impor­tance of clin­i­cal fol­low-up. The abnor­mal­ities ­observed in immu­no­log­i­cal param­e­ters may ­reflect the ­role of the cel­lu­lar and humo­ral ­immune ­system in path­o­gen­e­sis.

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