Frequency of OBI among Patients with Autoimmune Hepatitis

Document Type: Research Articles

Authors

1 Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center Health Research Institute, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

2 Virology Department, School of Medicine, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

3 Faculty of Medicine, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

4 Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Imam Khomeini hospital, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran.

5 Virology Department, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

Abstract

Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is recognized as a serious disease in which the body’s immune system attacks liver cells so untreated patients may consequently suffer from liver cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and liver failure. The role of viral infection may be involved in AIH. Presence of anti-HBc alone is a predictive signal of potential OBI. Thus, this study was conducted to evaluate the rate OBI among the patients with AIH. Methods: The sera of 20 consecutive  patients with AIH were collected and tested for LFT (ALT, AST, ALP elevation), Immunoglobulin (IgG) level, bilirubin, anti -LKM-1, ASMA, ANA in titer, HBsAg, HBcIgG. The patients’ sera were also tested for HBV DNA by nested PCR and Real-time PCR. Results: Out of 20 patients, 10 (50%) were males and 10 (50%) females. The patients’ ages ranged from 25 to 71 years with the mean age of 44.5±13.4. All patients’ had elevated abnormal ALT and AST but their level of alkaline phosphatase was normal among the patients. All patients had IgG level>1.5 times upper than the normal limit. The patients’ sera were negative for HBsAg and HBV DNA (by nested PCR and real- time PCR). Only 2 (10%) females with AHI type 1 (positive  ANA, ASMA in titers >1:100 were positive for HBcIgG while no OBI detection was found among the males (p=0.005)). All diagnosis of the AHI was confirmed by pathologist. The level of ALT, AST among the cases with positive and negative OBI were (p=0.000) and (p=0.003), respectively. Conclusion: In the present study, two OBI female patients with type 1 AIH were positive for anti-HBc but negative for HBsAg and HBV DNA. With regard to the consequences of OBI, prior to prophylactic treatment, it is recommended to screen HBV markers including anti-HBc in all diagnosed patients with AIH.
 

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