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Serum anti-modified citrullinated vimentin antibody concentration is associated with liver fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis

Authors Abdeen SM, Olusi S, George

Published 10 March 2011 Volume 2011:3 Pages 13—18


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

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Suad Abdeen, Samuel O Olusi, Sunila George
Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Kuwait University, Safat, Kuwait

Background and aims: The hepatic stellate cell, which plays a pivotal role in hepatic fibrosis, contains the filament vimentin which is known to undergo protein citrullination and become immunogenic. The aims of this study were to find out if anti-modified citrullinated vimentin (anti-MCV) antibodies are produced in patients with chronic hepatitis and if such production is associated with liver fibrosis.
Methods: Sera and liver biopsy specimens were collected from 100 patients with chronic hepatitis. Sera were also collected from 100 healthy controls. The liver biopsies were graded according to the Metavir fibrosis scores. The serum concentrations of anti-MCV antibody were measured in both patients and controls by ELISA using commercially available kits.
Results: The mean serum concentration of anti-MCV antibody in patients with chronic hepatitis (54.90 ± 6.09 U/mL) was significantly higher (P = 0.001) than that of controls (17.38 ± 0.56 U/mL). Furthermore, serum anti-MCV antibody titer was able to separate patients with no fibrosis from those with moderate or severe fibrosis or cirrhosis. Using receiver operating characteristic curves, a serum concentration of anti-MCV antibody of 8.82 U/mL was able to diagnose cirrhosis with 60% specificity and 60% sensitivity.
Conclusion: We concluded that serum anti-MCV antibody concentration may be a sensitive noninvasive marker for liver cirrhosis that needs to be investigated further.

Keywords: anti-MCV antibody, serum marker, liver fibrosis

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