Clinical significance of organ- and non-organ-specific autoantibodies on the response to anti-viral treatment of patients with chronic hepatitis C
AuthorGatselis, N. K.; Georgiadou, S. P.; Koukoulis, G. K.; Tassopoulos, N.; Zachou, K.; Liaskos, C.; Hatzakis, A.; Dalekos, G. N.
Background: Development of organ- and non-organ-specific autoantibodies has been reported in hepatitis C virus patients treated with interferon-α plus/minus ribavirin. Aims: To address whether prevalence and the titre of gastric parietal autoantibodies and non-organ-specific autoantibody in hepatitis C virus-treated patients were affected by therapy, and if the development of these antibodies carries any clinical significance on the response to treatment, as few studies in adults have been strictly designed to address the above hypothesis. Methods: Samples at three time-points (baseline, end of treatment, end of follow-up) from 102 hepatitis C virus patients (39 sustained responders, 26 relapsers, 33 non-responders; four lost in follow-up) were studied for gastric parietal autoantibodies and/or non-organ-specific autoantibody by indirect immunofluorescence, commercial and in-house enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Results: Sustained virological and biochemical response was associated with antinuclear antibody absence (end of treatment or end of follow-up), decrease of smooth-muscle antibody titres during therapy and gastric parietal autoantibodies negativity at baseline. However, after multivariate analysis only antinuclear antibody positivity at the end of treatment and increase of smooth-muscle antibody titres were associated with worst treatment response, independently of known factors of worst treatment outcome. Conclusions: We were able to demonstrate a negative correlation between the efficacy of anti-viral treatment for hepatitis C virus and the presence of antinuclear antibody and smooth-muscle antibody before treatment, or their increase during therapy. © 2006 The Authors.
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