Chronic non-A, non-B, non-C hepatitis: is hepatitis G/GBV-C involved?

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Hepatitis G virus/GBV-C is a recently discovered virus, and its relevance in chronic hepatitis is still debated. METHODS: We have previously described 127 long-term-studied and well-characterized patients with chronic non-A, non-B hepatitis (NANBH). Ninety-one (71.7%) were positive for hepatitis C virus antibodies (anti-HCV) in a first-generation anti-HCV enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). We now reanalyzed the same group of patients and added a third-generation anti-HCV ELISA and recombinant immunoblot assay and, in negative patients, also polymerase chain reactions for hepatitis C virus RNA, hepatitis GBV-C RNA, and hepatitis B virus DNA. Additional tests for autoimmune hepatitis types 2 and 3 were also included. RESULTS: Anti-HCV were detected in 114 of the 123 evaluable patients (92.7%). Of the remaining nine anti-HCV-negative patients one had misdiagnosed primary biliary cirrhosis, and two had autoimmune hepatitis type 3. None of the anti-HCV-negative patients were hepatitis GBV-C RNA-, HCV RNA-, or HBV DNA-positive. Thus, 114 of 120 NANBH patients (95.0%) had chronic hepatitis C. None of the remaining six patients had received blood transfusions or was a drug addict, and two of them were successfully treated with steroids. CONCLUSIONS: Hepatitis G/GBV-C as a single cause of chronic non-A, non-B hepatitis is uncommon, and in all patients with parenteral risk factors hepatitis C was detected.

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Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Keywords

  • Chronic hepatitis, hepatitis C, hepatitis G, non-A, non-B hepatitis
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1046-1051
JournalScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
Volume32
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1997
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes