Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)
Published in Association with the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM)
Editor-in-Chief: Plebani, Mario
Ed. by Gillery, Philippe / Greaves, Ronda / Lackner, Karl J. / Lippi, Giuseppe / Melichar, Bohuslav / Payne, Deborah A. / Schlattmann, Peter
IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 3.638
CiteScore 2018: 2.44
SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 1.191
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 1.205
Hypervariable Region 1 of Hepatitis C Virus Genome and Response to Interferon Therapy
The relationship between the complexity of the hypervariable region 1 (HVR1) quasispecies of hepatitis C virus (HCV) and responsiveness to interferon-α (IFN) therapy was studied in patients with chronic hepatitis C. Twelve HCV-RNA-positive patients were treated daily with high dose IFN and ribavirin for 4 weeks, and then with IFN 3 MIU (Million International Units) TIW (three times per week) and ribavirin for 6 months. The HVR1 quasispecies complexity was analyzed by nested polymerase chain reaction-mediated single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP). The baseline HCV-RNA levels in the study group ranged from 106 to 107 copies/ml. All patients exhibited HCV genotype 1 b. Initial SSCP analysis revealed four (33.3%) patients with a low complexity pattern (SSCP bands ≤4) and eight (66.6%) patients with high complexity pattern (SSCP bands >4). After 4 weeks of IFN therapy, one patient became HCV negative, and among those remaining positive, the HCV-RNA levels decreased by 2 to 3 logs and the number of SSCP decreased by 2 to 3 bands per sample. After 6 months of IFN therapy, five (41.7%) patients became HCV-RNA-negative. Seven (58.3%) patients did not respond to IFN therapy with sustained viral load from 103 to 105 copies/ml, and high complexity SSCP patterns. Our data support the HVR quasispecies complexity to be an independent predictive factor for IFN responsiveness in patients infected with HCV.
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