Genetic variation in IL28B and spontaneous clearance of hepatitis C virus


Thomas, David L., Thio, Chloe L., Martin, Maureen P., Qi, Ying, Ge, Dongliang, O'Huigin, Colm, Kidd, Judith, Kidd, Kenneth, Khakoo, Salim I., Alexander, Graeme, Goedert, James J., Kirk, Gregory D., Donfield, Sharyne M., Rosen, Hugo R., Tobler, Leslie H., Busch, Michael P., McHutchison, John G., Goldstein, David B. and Carrington, Mary (2009) Genetic variation in IL28B and spontaneous clearance of hepatitis C virus. Nature, 461, (7265), 798-801. (doi:10.1038/nature08463). (PMID:19759533).

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Description/Abstract

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common blood-borne infection in the United States, with estimates of 4 million HCV-infected individuals in the United States and 170 million worldwide. Most (70-80%) HCV infections persist and about 30% of individuals with persistent infection develop chronic liver disease, including cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Epidemiological, viral and host factors have been associated with the differences in HCV clearance or persistence, and studies have demonstrated that a strong host immune response against HCV favours viral clearance. Thus, variation in genes involved in the immune response may contribute to the ability to clear the virus. In a recent genome-wide association study, a single nucleotide polymorphism (rs12979860) 3 kilobases upstream of the IL28B gene, which encodes the type III interferon IFN-3, was shown to associate strongly with more than a twofold difference in response to HCV drug treatment. To determine the potential effect of rs12979860 variation on outcome to HCV infection in a natural history setting, we genotyped this variant in HCV cohorts comprised of individuals who spontaneously cleared the virus (n = 388) or had persistent infection (n = 620). We show that the C/C genotype strongly enhances resolution of HCV infection among individuals of both European and African ancestry. To our knowledge, this is the strongest and most significant genetic effect associated with natural clearance of HCV, and these results implicate a primary role for IL28B in resolution of HCV infection.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0028-0836 (print)
1476-4687 (electronic)
Keywords: hepatitis c, IL28B gene
Subjects: Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR180 Immunology
Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR355 Virology
R Medicine > RB Pathology
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine > Infection, Inflammation and Immunity
ePrint ID: 336184
Date Deposited: 16 Mar 2012 14:54
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 20:19
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/336184

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