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Hepatitis C virus infection and autoimmune diseases

Authors Paroli M, Iannucci G, Accapezzato D

Received 1 September 2012

Accepted for publication 22 September 2012

Published 23 October 2012 Volume 2012:5 Pages 903—907


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Marino Paroli,1 Gino Iannucci,2 Daniele Accapezzato2

1Department of Biotechnology and Medical-Surgical Sciences, 2Department of Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy

Abstract: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is associated with a number of extrahepatic disorders. The most studied conditions associated with HCV are type II mixed cryoglobulinemia and B cell lymphoma. However, many reports suggest that HCV might also be associated with a number of autoimmune disorders, both organ-specific and not organ-specific. Although concomitant treatment of HCV infection is a confounding factor when ascertaining the actual role of HCV in inducing autoimmune disease, a considerable amount of experimental data indicates that HCV is able to subvert the immune system and consequently induce autoimmunity. In the present review, we report a series of observations which associate chronic HCV infection with the onset of autoimmune disorders.

Keywords: hepatitis C virus, immune regulation, autoimmune diseases

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