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Detection of HCV-RNA in paraffin-embedded liver biopsies from patients with autoimmune hepatitis

Savage, K; Dhillon, AP; Schmilovitz-Weiss, H; El-Batanony, M; Brown, D; Dusheiko, G; Scheuer, PJ; (1995) Detection of HCV-RNA in paraffin-embedded liver biopsies from patients with autoimmune hepatitis. Journal of Hepatology , 22 (1) pp. 27-34. 10.1016/0168-8278(95)80256-8.

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Abstract

Background/Aims: There may be a relationship between autoimmune hepatitis and viral infection. To examine this relationship, 19 patients with autoimmune hepatitis and/or chronic hepatitis C were studied. Methods: Patients were selected initially on the basis of having autoantibodies (anti-nuclear, anti-smooth muscle, or anti-liver-kidney microsomal) in serum. Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded liver biopsies from these patients were tested for HCV-RNA by polymerase chain reaction. The biopsies were examined histologically to detect features suggestive of chronic hepatitis C or autoimmune hepatitis. The results were correlated with serum anti-HCV and HCV-RNA, and with response to steroid therapy. Results: Five of the nineteen patients had detectable HCV-RNA in their liver biopsies. In two of three patients from whom serum was available, HCV-RNA was detectable. The remaining 14 patients were negative for HCV-RNA by tissue polymerase chain reaction. Serum was available from 11 of these patients, and serum HCV-RNA was negative in all. All of the three HCV-RNA-positive patients who were treated with steroids showed a partial response; tissue positivity for HCV-RNA was significantly higher in partial responders than in complete responders (60% vs 0%, p=0.01). Severe portal and periportal inflammation with prominent plasma cells together with bridging parenchymal necrosis were seen more often in HCV-negative biopsies. Mild portal and periportal inflammation with portal lymphoid aggregates apoptosis and spotty parenchymal necrosis were seen more in HCV-positive biopsies. Conclusions: These results show that hepatitic C virus can be detected in some patients with circulating auto-antibodies. The ability to detect HCV-RNA in paraffin-embedded archival material provides a valuable addition to the battery of available HCV tests. © 1995.

Type: Article
Title: Detection of HCV-RNA in paraffin-embedded liver biopsies from patients with autoimmune hepatitis
DOI: 10.1016/0168-8278(95)80256-8
UCL classification: UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Wolfson Institute and Cancer Institute Administration > Cancer Institute
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/47844
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