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Antibody to the Human T-Lymphotropic Virus Type 1 (HTLV-1) Envelope Protein Gp46 in Patients Co-infected with HCV and HTLV-1

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  • 1 Department of Environmental Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan; Department of General Medicine, Kyushu University Hospital, Fukuoka, Japan, Fukuoka Red Cross Blood Center, Fukuoka, Japan
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Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) infection is known to affect hepatitis C virus (HCV) clearance and to accelerate the development of hepatocellular carcinoma in HCV-infected patients. In this study, we found the prevalence and titer of an antibody recognizing the central region of the HTLV-1 Gp46 protein to be associated with the severity of chronic liver disease. The antibody prevalence was significantly correlated with the stage of chronic liver disease (P < 0.0001): 3 (14.3%) of 21 patients with minimal–mild chronic hepatitis, 12 (24%) of 50 with moderate–severe chronic hepatitis, 7 (87.5%) of 8 with liver cirrhosis, and 13 (100%) of 13 with hepatocellular carcinoma. These results indicate that the antibody may be a useful marker of the deterioration of liver disease in patients co-infected with HCV and HTLV-1. This antibody may be useful for the diagnosis of liver diseases and the development of more effective treatments.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: Jun Hayashi, Department of General Medicine, Kyushu University Hospital, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka, 812-8582, Japan, Telephone: +81-92-642-5909, Fax: +81-92-642-5916, E-mail: hayashij@genmedpr.med.kyushu-u.ac.jp.
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