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Correlation between Serum Levels of HCV Core Antigen and Liver Enzymes for Assessment of Disease Activity in Chronic Hepatitis C Patients

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1Wafaa A. Zahran, 1Asmaa M. Elbrolosy, 2Noha J. Ali*
1Microbiology and Immunology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Menoufia University, Egypt
2Shebin Elkom Fever Hospital, Menoufia, Egypt

ABSTRACT

Background: Chronic HCV infection and the associated complications represent a significant threat to the medical community particularly in highly endemic areas. HCV core antigen (HCVcAg) in serum or plasma is a marker of HCV replication and viral kinetics. HCVcAg becomes detectable few days after HCV RNA and can be used as a substitute for HCV RNA for the diagnosis of acute or chronic HCV infection. Objective: The objective of this study was to correlate between serum levels of HCVcAg and liver enzymes (surrogate markers of liver damage) for assessment of disease activity in chronic HCV-infected patients among Egyptians. Methodology: This study involved 28 patients (10 females & 18 males) from those attending the Outpatient Clinic of Shebin El-Kom Fever Hospital with chronic HCV infection. They were classified according to Child Pugh classification into Child-Pugh stage A (71.4%) and stage B (28.6%). All patients were subjected to full history taking, clinical examination, abdominal ultrasound, liver function tests, renal function tests, CBC, fasting blood sugar and measurement of serum HCVcAg level by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results: Serum levels of ALT as well as AST were significantly elevated in liver cirrhotic patients. There was a highly significant positive correlation between HCVcAg and ALT, AST, GGT and ALP (P-value <0.001) while there was no statistically significant correlation between HCVcAg and total bilirubin, albumin, AFP levels, PT time, PT concentration and INR (P-value > 0.05).Conclusion: HCVcAg concentrations had an excellent correlation with liver enzymes levels. HCVcAg could be believed as prognostic marker for disease severity in chronic HCV infection.

About EJMM

The Egyptian Journal of Medical Microbiology EJMM  ISSN Print 1110-2179 - ISSN Online: 1110-2179, The official publication of Egyptian Society of Medical Microbiology

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