Saudi Journal of Gastroenterology
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2013  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 262-270

Study of non-organ-specific antibodies in children with Genotype 4 chronic Hepatitis C


1 Department of Pediatric Hepatology, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Egypt
2 Department of Pediatric Hepatology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
3 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Egypt
4 Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Egypt
5 Department of Clinical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Egypt
6 Department Medical Biochemistry, Zagazig University, Zagazig, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Naglaa M Kamal Alanani
Department of Pediatrics, Pediatric Hepatology,Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo
Egypt
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1319-3767.121038

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Background/Aim: Adult studies established a relationship between hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and the presence of non-organ-specific antibodies (NOSAs). Most studies were carried out on genotypes 1 and 2. Only a few studies addressed that issue in pediatrics. No studies have been carried out on autoimmunity and genotype 4 in children. We aim to investigate NOSAs in 80 Egyptian children with chronic HCV infection along with studying the underlying genotype of HCV, and correlating autoimmunity with the epidemiological, clinical, biochemical, and virological features. Materials and Methods: HCV-RNA was assayed by the polymerase chain reaction and viral genotypes were determined. NOSAs were measured and liver biopsies were taken for histopathological examination. Results:Genotype 4 was the only detected genotype in the included 80 patients. Anti-smooth muscle antibodies (ASMA) were the only detected antibodies in 32 (40%) patients, always with V specificity (vessels only) at titers ranging from 1:20 and 1:160. Anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA) and liver-kidney microsomal antibodies-1 (LKMA-1) were not detected in any of our patients. Epidemiologic and clinical features did not significantly differ between autoantibody-positive and -negative patients. Among biochemical features, significantly high levels of total bilirubin, albumin, immunoglobulins, alkaline phosphatase, and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase were found in the antibody-positive group. Conclusion: Genotype 4 HCV is the prevailing genotype in Egyptian children with chronic HCV infection. A consistent proportion of these children with chronic HCV infection circulate non-organ-specific autoantibodies. The prevalence of ASMA and the absence of ANA and LKMA-1 might be related to the unique situation in Egypt with unique prevalence of genotype 4. More studies are warranted on larger pediatric population to validate these findings.


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