Seroprevalence of Hepatitis E Virus in Autoimmune Hepatitis Patients in the Netherlands

NMF van Gerven, Annemiek Baltissen - van der Eijk, Suzan Pas, HL Zaaijer, YS de Boer, BI Witte, CMJ van Nieuwkerk, CJJ Mulder, Rob de Man

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademic

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background & Aims: In recent years chronic courses of hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection have been described in immunosuppressed individuals. This may implicate a potential role for HEV in the development of autoimmune diseases, including autoimmune hepatitis (AIH). Here we investigated the prevalence of HEV-antibodies in AIH patients in an endemic Central European country. Methods: HEV-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) and HEV RNA were determined in 354 and 377 AIH patients, respectively. Clinical characteristics and disease outcome parameters were retrospectively collected. Results: No HEV viraemic patients were identified in this cohort. A total of 106 AIH patients (29.9%) tested positive for anti-HEV IgG, and this figure was slightly higher compared to the prevalence in a reference cohort including 5,329 healthy Dutch blood donors (26.7%; P>0.05). Conclusion: This is the largest study on the association between HEV infection and AIH. Apparently silent HEV infection is present in a significant proportion of AIH patients, yet appears not to have significant clinical repercussions in this immune compromised group of patients. Nevertheless, since acute hepatitis E may present with histological and biochemical features of AIH, the possibility of a (concomitant) HEV infection should be considered in this category of patients.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)9-13
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases
Volume25
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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