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Toll-like Receptor 7 Expression and Gene Polymorphism in Patients with Hepatitis C and Hepatocellular Carcinoma

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1Mabrouk M. Ghonaim, 2Azza M. Abd El Aziz, 1Rasha G. Mostafa, 2Fatma O. Khalil,
2Asmaa E.M. Mohammed*
¹Microbiology and Immunology Department, Faculty of Medicine- Menoufia University
²Medical Microbiology and Immunology Department, National Liver Institute, Menoufia University


Background: Toll-like receptor-7 (TLR7) plays pivotal roles in type I interferon (IFN) secretion and protective antiviral immunity against hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Objectives: To assess expression levels of TLR7 in patients with hepatitis C infection and patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), to investigate possible association between TLR7 (rs179009) polymorphism and infection outcome, and to compare the expressions of TLR7 variants. Methodology: A total of 98 candidates, divided into four groups, were enrolled in this study. TLR7 mRNA expression level was determined for all participants using real-time PCR, and TLR7 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs179009 was assessed using Taq-Man SNP genotyping assay and real-time PCR. Results: TLR7 expression levels were significantly lower in patients with chronic HCV and HCC compared to patients who naturally cleared their infection and controls (P< 0.05). In females, the AA genotype and the A allele were significantly predominant in HCV clearance group (83.33%), healthy controls (78.6%) and HCC patients (75%), compared to females with chronic hepatitis (21.4%) (P< 0.05), while, the AG and GG genotypes were more commonly found in chronic HCV-infected females. However, no association was found regarding TLR7 polymorphism genotypes distribution in males and HCV susceptibility. High TLR7 expression levels were associated with the AA genotype in HCV-infected females and males. Conclusion: HCV may induce down regulation of TLR7 expression. Polymorphisms in TLR7 gene with different expression levels might affect immune response during 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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